Is Facebook Your Go-To For News?
The social media giant has made major changes to the site. How your feed will be different.
's brainchild is going through its umpteenth update. Following last month's privacy tweaks
(you can't hide on the site anymore) here are some of new changes you'll see.
"High quality content":
Users will (hopefully) see more "high quality content" like news articles and current events, especially on their mobile phones. For example, if your friend has left a comment on linked news article it'll be bumped to the top of your feed. This is an effort to bring more to the conversation around the articles. It also means you might see the same stories a number of times if new comments get added to the article. Also, in the near future, users will get to see up to three related articles directly below the News Feed post.
Bye-bye meme pics:
Since "quality" is being stressed, this means jokey memes are getting the thumbs down. Based on the company's internal survey, users don't like clicking on funny memes. The company elaborated in a blog post
, "Starting soon, we’ll be doing a better job of distinguishing between a high quality article on a website versus a meme photo hosted somewhere other than Facebook." I'm looking at you Bitstrips.
"Hide All" being replaced:
Users can soon "Unfollow" friends whose comments and updates they don't want to see without the harsh ax of the Un-Friending toggle. Sound familiar? Basically, this new Unfollow button works the same way as "hide all." It's just new phrasing/coping Twitterspeak.
How tweaks are helping online publishers
Facebook announced back in October that their referral traffic to news publications was up 170 percent in 2012. This means more and more people are using Facebook to read the news. Buzzfeed celebrated a record-breaking high of 130 million unique viewers in November thanks largely to Facebook and Twitter sharing.
What's the goal of all these changes?
According to Mashable, "The updates are a reflection of Facebook's continued push to make the platform the place to go to stay up-to-date on what's happening around you."
Do you like the new Facebook changes?