We’re always saying it: “The only thing constant in social media is change” – and Facebook is proving that with another change coming to news feeds.
Facebook has said they have been taking steps to battle “fake news” but this latest update announced on Wednesday, April 10th shows they are taking even more steps to stop misinformation from appearing on our timelines. These changes could affect business Pages and Groups as they look to remove content that goes against their Community Standards to reduce the spreading of misinformation.
The latest Facebook algorithm change brings a new metric designed to identify websites that are proving popular on the social media platform yet not anywhere else on the internet. This disproportion of popularity is often a sign that the source isn’t legitimate or is of low quality. Facebook will be lowering the reach of these links to ensure less people see them.
It’s not just links Facebook is targeting. They are currently testing an expansion of their Context Button which will help people decide what to read and trust to cover images too.
Facebook is also now cracking down on Groups that go against their Community Standards and Terms and Conditions. While the social media giants have been promoting the use of Groups for a greater community feel, they have recognized that Groups can also be a place where misinformation spreads rapidly.
Group Admins will be held responsible for what is being posted within the Group. Reach will be limited if content that has been labeled as false repeatedly gets posted. If content posted by Admins and Moderators, member posts they have approved, violates Facebook’s Community Standards and terms, then the Group will risk being shut down.
Also being rolled out soon, when members leave a Group, they will have the option to delete all their posts from that Group.
Instagram has also implemented a few changes affecting feeds. They are limiting the reach of content that may be questionable yet does not quite violate their standards. This includes photos that are suggestive, violent or inappropriate. While these photos will still show up in the feeds of those who follow the account, they may not show up under hashtag feeds or in Explore.
For the Greater Good?
For most of those running genuine Business Pages and/or Groups, these changes aren’t anything to worry about. However, it is a good warning to everyone to be wary of what is being shared. This is especially true of Group Admins who now have greater responsibility to ensure their group is not sharing low-quality links. Is it a legitimate source? Is it a topic that’s being discussed elsewhere?
What do you think about the new Facebook algorithm changes? Are they a good thing or going too far? Let us know your thoughts over on our own Page, Digital Flamingo, or in the comments!
Not sure if your business is posting what it should be? Need some tips on what content you should be sharing? Get in touch with us to arrange a social media consultation that sets you on the right path.