Facebook looks for "meaning" with major news feed overhaul

Rodiano Bonacci
Gennaio 14, 2018

Facebook users can expect less media and public content in their news feeds and more posts from their families and friends under new plans to make the social media site more "relevant" to users.

In a blog post, Facebook CEO and Founder Mark Zuckerberg said the goal is to ensure that users feel happy when they're on the site, something that's easier to accomplish if you're seeing baby pictures rather than news articles about Russian Federation investigations.

The changes could shrink the social media giant's role as a major news source for many people.

The CEO said Facebook has got a feedback from the community that public content - posts from businesses, brands and media - is crowding out the personal moments that lead us to connect more with each other.

It also comes following academic and expert research published by Facebook last month which showed using social media can in fact leave consumers feeling worse. For Zuckerberg, however, the concern is too many consumers are having a passive social media experience, reading but not actively interacting via the platform. Facebook says its research shows that users are exposed to more divergent views on its platform than they would be otherwise, but that's hard to verify independently since the company is cautious about providing data to outsiders.

"We can feel more connected and less lonely, and that correlates with long term measures of happiness and health".

Facebook's stock dropped around 4% in premarket trading on January 12 following its announcement that it would make changes to its core news feed product.

Advertising should be useful and informative, and/or entertaining and add value to culture, Davey continued. "For brands, this will mean more doing than saying".

In a separate post on the news, Facebook head of news feeds, Adam Mosseri, confirmed pages may see their reach, video watch time and referral traffic decrease.

That's because even if people read such content on Facebook, they don't necessarily comment or interact with it in other ways.

This could exacerbated the spread of fake news, as users will be less likely to see posts that originate from a different perspective. In addition, page posts that generate conversation between people will show higher in news feeds, with video expected to be the winning format here. "And the public content you see more will be held to the same standard - it should encourage meaningful interactions between people".

"One of our big focus areas for 2018 is making sure the time we all spend on Facebook is time well-spent". By bringing the focus back to interactions between friends and family, Facebook is simply going back to basics.

The idea is to help users to connect with people they care about, not make them feel depressed and isolated.

"Like all mediums, Facebook is subject to market conditions and this will find its own "water level" overt time".

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