A week later announcing makor update to the News Feed, which are designed around bringing friends and family closer together as they interact more meaningful connections on its plaftform, Facebook has just said it wants users to see more high-quality and localised news in their feed, while less overall.
As a result of these updates, people will now see less public content, including news, video and posts from brands, while more quality and localised contents available to them.
Facebook, since last year has been on work to reduce fake news and clickbait, while also blocking spammers from generating incentives out of these articles. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg calling it as the second major update coming this year said, “I’ve asked our product teams to make sure we prioritize news that is trustworthy, informative, and local.”
Adding further, he said, “There’s too much sensationalism, misinformation and polarization in the world today. Social media enables people to spread information faster than ever before, and if we don’t specifically tackle these problems, then we end up amplifying them. That’s why it’s important that News Feed promotes high quality news that helps build a sense of common ground.”
The update which starts rolling next week with trusted sources will prioritize:
- News from publications that the community rates as trustworthy
- News that people find informative
- News that is relevant to people’s local community
Furthermore, Zuckerberg said, people still will be able to select stories to appear at the top of their News Feed through the “See First” feature.
Facebook says, news from trusted sources rolling out next week comes from the data it gathered through the “quality surveys” held across the US. More specifically, the company gathered data by asking users about their familiarity with, and trust in, various different sources of news. With this data, Facebook says that the reliable sources will be those which are considered trustworthy even by those who don’t actively follow that source’s content.
It will start with the US, as international launch will happen in the future.
For informative content, the company notes it will continue relying on users ranking of the updates in their feed, which scale from one to five.
With the updates, “Publications deemed trustworthy by people using Facebook may see an increase in their distribution. While publications that don’t score highly as trusted by the community may see a decrease,” says Facebook.
Lastly, on the local news, the company says a dedicated section is created where it will show more local relevant news where people live.
To learn more about ranking more generally, see this Publisher Guidelines.