Facebook is testing a new section to emphasize local news

Facebook is testing a new section to emphasize local news

Facebook is testing a new section to emphasize local news

The social network also announced last month that it has started demoting engagement bait posts from the users' news feed. Facebook is giving a good look at the configuration and testing of this engaging new attribute.

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 social network wants to reduce what Zuckerberg called "passive content" - videos and articles that ask little more of the viewer than to sit back and watch or read - so that users' time on the site was well spent. The company hasn't decided whether to proceed with the shift, and it may choose not to do so.

Zuckerberg said an overhaul of the company's products, beginning with changes to the algorithms that control the News Feed, would help to address those concerns. However, they have not been fair to many people over the years, in fact one of the reasons they stated for the "Boosted Posts" is because newsfeed had gotten too popular and there were too many posts battling for valuable real estate.

Because space in News Feed is limited, showing more posts from friends and family and updates that spark conversation means we'll show less public content, including videos and other posts from publishers or businesses.


"This will be one of the more important updates that we have made". There is some consternation among publishers that this strategy could lead to a significant reduction in traffic referred from Facebook over time.

Pressure has been building on Facebook and its CEO as the toxic content flowing through Facebook - violent live videos, fabricated news articles and divisive messages from Russian operatives to influence the 2016 US presidential campaign - has been blamed for ripping holes in the social fabric. This required Facebook to "refocus the system", he said. And Zuckerberg said that this content should encourage "meaningful interactions" between people.

"By making these changes, I expect the time people spend on Facebook and some measures of engagement will go down", Mr Zuckerberg wrote. Product managers are being asked to "facilitate the most meaningful interactions between people", rather than the previous mandate of helping people find the most meaningful content, he said. "Because this [change] is naturally good for friend content and for conversation, it's actually going to be good for the diversity of opinion in News Feed".

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

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