- Facebook plans to change how its news feed works, playing up status updates from friends and family.
- On the flip side, it will deemphasize news articles and anything published by brands.
- Facebook is trying to foster “meaningful interaction” and make Facebook more of a force for good, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said.
- Facebook is coming off of a tough year, where it had to battle fake news and reports that Russian-linked groups attempted to influence the 2016 presidential election via ads on its service.
In the wake of criticism about how its news feed can be manipulated and is having a negative effect on users, Facebook is making some big changes to its flagship feature.
The company plans to give more prominence to status updates and photos shared by users’ friends and family while at the same time playing down news articles or anything published by brands, company official said.
“We feel a responsibility to make sure our services aren’t just fun to use, but also good for people’s well-being,” Zuckerberg said in a post Thursday on his Facebook page.
The New York Times reported the changes earlier on Thursday. Facebook confirmed them in Zuckerberg’s post and in a blog post titled ” Bringing People Closer Together ” by Adam Mosseri, who heads the company’s news feed.
Facebook’s revamping of its news feed is intended to ensure more “meaningful interaction” on the social network, Zuckerberg said in his post. The company wants to encourage users to have more conversations with people they know, rather than passively consuming articles or videos.
The news comes a week after Zuckerberg announced that his New Years resolution for 2018 would be to focus on systemic issues with Facebook including abuse and hacking.
“The world feels anxious and divided, and Facebook has a lot of work to do – whether it’s protecting our community from abuse and hate, defending against interference by nation states, or making sure that time spent on Facebook is time well spent,” wrote Zuckerberg in a Facebook post announcing his resolution.
The social networking giant is coming off a rough 2017, amid revelations of fake news andads placed by Russian linked actors allegedly to influence the 2016 presidential election .