Another Attempt to Retain Users – Facebook Modifies its News Feed

Facebook is trying to make alterations in its existing features in an attempt to retain the users who are moving to other social networks. The tweaks that have been made are not so significant, but if you follow your News Feed diligently, you will probably love these changes. The News Feed algorithm has been updated with expectations that it will provide the users with high quality content. Apart from that, users can now “unfollow” friends whose posts they don’t want to see in their News Feed. It is a matter of debate whether these modifications can actually appeal the users. Let us have a look at these changes.

Facebook News Feed

More High Quality Content

With the update of the News Feed algorithm, Facebook is hoping that it will provide its users with high quality content. This will come in the form of articles, events or news. So, if you were fed up of the unnecessary links coming up in your feed, you can hopefully breathe a sigh of relief. Now you can expect more news and links of stories in your feed. Popular stories or links on which your friends have commented will come up in your News Feed. The same story may come up each time a new comment is added by your friends. This may turn out to be disturbing.

Apart from news, memes which are posted outside Facebook and which your friends have clicked on, will also appear in your feed. However, they will have lesser prominence than the high quality articles in your News Feed. You will also get article recommendations when you click on a link in the feed. You will find the recommended links below the actual post that you have clicked.

Unfollow Button

Following the lines of Pinterest and Twitter, Facebook is now incorporating the Unfollow button. If you are annoyed to see useless posts from any friend, popping up in your News Feed every time you log in, you can now “unfollow” that friend. This new feature is nothing but the Hide All feature that you have been using until now. The only difference lies in the phrasing.

With the introduction of this feature, Facebook is trying to use the common jargon that is associated with many social sites like Twitter and Pinterest. “Follow” and “unfollow” are generally used in these two social sites. Using this term, Facebook is trying to provide its users with more options.

If you know how to use the Hide All button, you can use the same process for Unfollow. Click on the upper right hand corner of the post, you will find a drop down arrow. Click on it and unfollow your friend. You can also go to your friend’s profile and next to the Friends button, you will find another button, using which you can either “follow” or “unfollow” your friend.

Your friend will not get to know whether you are ‘following’ her or not. So, you don’t have to fear about offending your friend.

Will Users find these Changes Helpful?

The changes are being made to enhance the user experience. But the question is will users actually find these features useful? Are they enough to retain them? The popularity of Facebook is fading, at least among the youth. So, its time Facebook does something big which can outdo other social sites.

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