Facebook is tweaking the algorithms that run its users’ news feeds in order to hide posts deemed “clickbait” by the company.
Facebook is clamping down on “clickbait” because it looks to cut annoying content from users’ news feeds.
In a article on Monday, the social networking revealed that 80pc of users inside a content survey preferred “headlines that helped them determine if they wanted to read the full article before they’d to click through”.
Facebook admits that click-bait posts tend to get a lot of clicks, which increase their prominence in News Feed and also the number of people the they’re suggested to.
So using the updates, Facebook will look in the amount of stickiness and user engagement garnered by heavily clicked links. For instance, if a Facebook user clicks via a link and bounces right back to Facebook, chances are they didn’t find what they wanted and also the link is likely click-bait spam.
The social networking said that a “small set” of publishers could see their distribution decrease following the change, but that the changes are essential so that clickbait content does not “drown the things that people really want to see on Facebook”.
Facebook will use an algorithm to calculate the number of users clicking on content in comparison to the number of people who shared it with friends on their news feeds. The amount of time that users spend reading an article away from Facebook will also be taken into account.
Publishers who share links in photo captions or status updates – rather than by using the social network’s dedicated format – will also be penalised.