Zuckerberg makes FB News Feed more 'meaningful'


The change is the biggest tweak the social network has made to the news feed - essentially the soul of Facebook - in years.

In contrast, "passively reading articles or watching videos - even if they're entertaining or informative - may not be as good".

Facebook will bump news stories and adverts down users' news feeds to prioritise posts from friends and family instead, its co-founder Mark Zuckerberg said last night.

The News Feed shake-up will also usher in a shift in thinking for Facebook's product teams.

That's because the move could come at a high price. Take, for instance, the Serbian editor of a non-profit investigative journalism organisation who wrote an op-ed in the New York Times decrying the change as detrimental to Serbia's already shaky democracy.

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Last week, the Facebook CEO said he would start "fixing" the issues facing the social media giant, including the spread of abuse and hate and "defending against interference" from state governments. The social media company wants its users to have meaningful conversation with family and friends.

But Zuckerberg admits the changes could cause a slump in the amount of time people spend using his social media creation. Facebook, he said, had closely studied what kinds of posts had stressed or harmed users.

In May, Ukraine imposed sanctions on Russian social media platforms and web services.

The concession did not happen in a vacuum.

In an exclusive video interview with CNN Tech's Laurie Segall, Facebook VP Adam Mosseri described the move as a "rebalancing" of how Facebook's algorithms rank items in the main feed. He later softened his remarks.

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For now, Page content will remain on the Feed - although businesses are going to have to work harder to keep their content relevant when competing for less space on the News Feed.

By prioritizing content that sparks conversations, Facebook could risk promoting more polarizing and opinionated posts that generate lots of comments, only adding to the filter bubble.

"We've gotten feedback from our 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", wrote Zuckerberg.

"As we roll this out, you will see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media".

Facebook's own major video initiative, "Watch", likely won't suffer though. that while Facebook will likely show fewer videos from publishers, it would would still be prioritizing its own scripted shows. There will be fewer videos, which Facebook considers "passive". Facebook displayed its willingness to sacrifice profit to tackle big problems when it announced late a year ago a plan to hire thousands of content moderators to deal with Russian interference and misinformation on the platform. Martin said. "This confirms that we will have to pursue other channels".

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"People will actually spend less time on Facebook, but we feel good about that because it will make the time they do spend more valuable, and be good for our business in the end".