News Feed FYI: New Signals to Show You More Authentic and Timely Stories
By Akos Lada, Research Scientist, James Li, Research Scientist, and Shilin Ding, Engineering Manager
Our goal with News Feed is to show people the stories that are most relevant to them. Today we’re announcing two updates to better rank posts in your feed:
Incorporating new signals to better identify and rank authentic content
A new way to predict and rank in real-time when posts might be more relevant to you
New Signals to Identify Authentic Content
One of our News Feed values is authentic communication. We’ve heard from our community that authentic stories are the ones that resonate most — those that people consider genuine and not misleading, sensational or spammy.
When ranking News Feed we look at many signals personal to you, such as how close you are to the person or Page posting, as well as more universal signals like the overall engagement (likes, comments, shares) that a post has.
With this update, we’re adding new universal signals to determine whether a post might be authentic. To do this, we categorized Pages to identify whether or not they were posting spam or trying to game feed by doing things like asking for likes, comments or shares. We then used posts from these Pages to train a model that continuously identifies whether posts from other Pages are likely to be authentic. For example, if Page posts are often being hidden by people reading them, that’s a signal that it might not be authentic.
If a post is likely to be authentic based on the new signals we look at, it might show up higher in your feed.
Updates to Real-Time Signals
When ranking feed to determine the relevance of a post, we always look at real-time signals, such as whether a friend has just commented on it. We continue to improve News Feed to evaluate the importance of different signals at different times.
With today’s update, we will now take into account how signals change in real time. So now if there is a lot of engagement from many people on Facebook about a topic, or if a post from a Page is getting a lot of engagement, we can understand in real-time that the topic or Page post might be temporarily more important to you, so we should show that content higher in your feed.
For example, if your favorite soccer team just won a game, we might show you posts about the game higher up in News Feed because people are talking about it more broadly on Facebook.
Will This Impact My Page?
We anticipate that most Pages won’t see any significant changes to their distribution in News Feed. Some Pages might see a small increase in referral traffic or outbound clicks, and some Pages might see minor decreases. Pages should continue to post stories that are relevant to their audiences.