Facebook is changing what its users will see to highlight posts they are most likely to engage with and make time spent on social media more "meaningful".
"We built Facebook to help people stay connected and bring us closer together with the people that matter to us", said Mark Zuckerberg. They make this argument despite the fact that Facebook has editorial control over content posted on the platform and - with the changes now being implemented - the fact that Facebook is deciding what factors make news sources worthy of being placed in its News Feed.
A large part of brands and media companies' strategies is to post articles and videos from their pages to engage consumers - items that aren't considered "meaningful interactions" between people.
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"What are we really here to do?" he told The Times. They're getting pressure from governments, companies and users to reduce the amount of fake news entering public discourse and they're not quite sure how to handle it. Since then, annual sales have soared from US$5.1 billion to an estimated US$40.2 billion past year - and the news feed has become increasingly crowded with advertisements and posts from brands and publications.
Facebook announced a change to its News Feed algorithm that will keep posts from news publishers and brands out of your feed. It looks like Facebook has planned some major changes for its News Feed this year.
But Facebook's sweeping change on Thursday means none of that content will be able to break through.
Zuckerberg has mentioned that for this year the mission is to "fix" the Facebook, by targeting the abuse and hate content and by ensuring that the time spent on the social giant is well spent and valuable.
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He quoted an academic research pointing out that interactions with the loved ones are more healthy and important for a person's wellbeing, instead of just reading news articles or watching shared videos. Facebook says it expects the reach of posts made by companies to decrease, but users can still find content from pages they enjoy by clicking the "Show First" option.
But Gavin Adamson, who teaches digital media courses at Ryerson University's School of Journalism, said outlets will also have to rely on changes in reader behaviour if they hope to make up potential losses caused by Facebook's new focus.
What does this mean for Pages and public content?
As we roll this out, you'll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media. The social network has been followed for important and local news by people around the globe. " Adding that if Facebook does the morally right thing and starts enforcing a meaningful set of standards over the content Facebook allows people to see on an everyday basis, it "will be good for our community and our business over the long term too". Unfortunately, Facebook's engagement-obsessed algorithm insists there's nothing better than a baby-and shows a steady parade of children, often born to people I barely know.
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