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emfizz.com January 19, 2018


Facebook wants more interaction, but could sacrifice time on platform

12 January 2018, 12:13 | Bernard Bryant

Facebook wants more interaction, but could sacrifice time on platform

Facebook news feed changes ‘deeply significant’ for publishing industry

Soon, Facebook says you will see more status updates from friends and family that spark meaningful social exchanges - parents discussing what bedtime stories to read to children, a friend seeking advice on places to travel or a newsy article or video on a topic you care about.

The goal of the overhaul, ultimately, is for something less quantifiable that may be hard to achieve: Facebook wants people to feel positive, rather than negative, after visiting.

Facebook constantly tweaks its computer algorithms to maintain interest in its news feed, the company's main attention-getter. The deal then seemed very attractive for smaller publishers in particular - as many were already dependent completely on Facebook for their audiences.

With social media under pressure for allowing the alleged Russian meddling, Facebook announced a new project to combat such efforts in November 2017.

Last week, Zuckerberg said his "personal challenge" for 2018 (something he's done every year since 2009), will be to fix Facebook. The social media company wants its users to have meaningful conversation with family and friends. Live videos, the company says, often generate more organic interactions.

"At its best, Facebook has always been about personal connections".

What's unclear is whether the changes could perpetuate an echo chamber effect, assuming users are more likely to interact with posts that reinforce their beliefs.

Facebook first launched back in 2004 as a way for Harvard students to connect with each other. More recently, he began signalling that Facebook was rethinking what it shows people on the site.

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

Zuckerberg said earlier this month that his personal goal for 2018 would be to focus on "fixing" many of these existential issues, including "making sure that time spent on Facebook is time well spent".

"Just because a tool can be used for good and bad, that doesn't make the tool bad.it just means you need to understand what the negative is so that you can mitigate it", he said.

In a lengthy post on Facebook, Zuckerberg wrote: "We built Facebook to help people stay connected and bring us closer together with the people that matter to us".

Zuckerberg said he was now focusing his company around the new approach.

"It's important to me that when Max and August grow up that they feel like what their father built was good for the world", Zuckerberg said. Zuckerberg said that from now on, "you can expect to see more from your friends, family, and groups", and the public content that does appear should be the kind that encourages "meaningful interactions between people".

The News Feed shake-up will also usher in a shift in thinking for Facebook's product teams. In November, Sean Parker, the founding president of Facebook, took aim at Facebook in an interview with Axios, saying he and other executives created a "social-validation feedback loop" to make Facebook psychologically addictive.



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