Facebook update gives priority to popular posts

Posted on August 8, 2013


Following a recent Facebook update, posts that receive the most attention will stay prominent on users’ News Feeds for longer.

Speaking about the changes, Facebook’s Lars Backstrom said that the point of the News Feed is to provide people with the content they’re after. With this in mind, he said that the new goal would be to offer content in order of relevance to an individual’s interests.

Presently, posts made by a user’s friends, groups and ‘Like’ pages are presented on the news feed in chronological order.

As of today (8th August), a new algorithm will see older, popular posts maintaining prominence on a News Feed if they continue to receive attention in the form of likes and comments.

The algorithm will take into account how long a user interacts with the poster, the level of interaction the post has received from other users, how much an individual has interacted with similar posts previously, and whether or not the post is being hidden or reported.

Some analysts have argued that the changes will result in large numbers of users all reading fewer posts. For companies using social media as part of a broader SEO strategy, the update could be a mixed blessing – although lower quality posts will likely be seen by fewer people, engaging, humorous or thought-provoking content could end up reaching a much broader audience.

The changes were announced through a recent blog post – the first in the News Feed FYI series, which Facebook says will bring transparency to the way the feature works.

Richard is a Web Content Editor at Engage Web. He has had work published in a number of independent magazines and spends much of his spare time writing short stories.

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