Near the end of last week, Facebook Founder and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, announced in an interview that the social media platform will be completely overhauling its popular newsfeed and changing the type of content it delivers to users.
One of the biggest changes to Facebook in years, Zuckerberg and the world's most popular platform hope the new changes to the newsfeed provide users with more meaningful and positive content, instead of prioritizing viral videos and news articles.
Now, users (and brands) are wondering what this means for them. We've broken down the news and changes into five easy steps, to help you get caught up.
1. Less Viral Videos and News Articles from Media Companies
The changes to Facebook's newsfeed will deliver less "passive content" to users as Mark Zuckerberg put it. "Passive content" is content that does not spark user meaningful interaction but is simply consumed for informational or entertainment purposes (e.g. viral videos and news articles).
2. More Posts and Photos by Your Family and Friends
The new type of content that Facebook aims to deliver more regularly is meaningful content—like a photo of your sister's new dog or an exciting new job announcement from a close friend from college. The majority of this content will be sourced based on level of engagement from your actual friend network. If you're close friends are liking or commenting on post, Facebook will deliver the post in your feed.
3. Facebook Now Wants to be "Good for Your Well-Being"
The idea behind this shift seems to actually stem from Zuckerberg directly. “This big wave of public content has really made us [at Facebook] reflect: What are we really here to do?” Mr. Zuckerberg said. Much of this new perspective can e attributed to Zuckerberg's family life—which has caused him to rethink his legacy and the world he is created for his two daughters.
4. Facebook Has Been Under Fire the Last Few Months
The press has speculated that it's not just Zuckerberg's family values that are behind the reengineering of Facebook's Newsfeed. The platform has also been under fire the past few months due their old News Feed prioritizing news articles—specifically involving the most recent U.S. election—that were, in fact, misleading or fake.
5. The Updated Feed May Hurt Publishers, Partners and Brands
The repercussions of from Facebook's new newsfeed changes are likely to hurt publishers, partners and brands that rely on Facebook to promote their articles and content. By having their category of posts de-emphasized in the feed, there is a great chance they will not longer be able to reach and engage with their audiences. Time will tell as to whether or not Facebook will provide a solution to this, or if publishers and brands will flock to a new, more news-driven platform.