Facebook To Boost Original News Reporting, Downgrade Clickbait Content
In a bid to improve the quality of news it displays to users and downgrade clickbait content, social media platform Facebook on Tuesday said it is going to “prioritize original reporting” and “stories with transparent authorship,” fulfilling a long pending demand of news publications.
Applying only to news content on user’s feed, the California-based company said, “these signals are based on user research and were built with feedback from news publishers and academic experts. They will only apply to news content.”
The world’s biggest social media company said that it’ll ‘prioritise’ original reporting as it’s a form of journalism that takes time and expertise. “Original reporting plays an important role in informing people around the world, from breaking a news story, to creating an in-depth investigative report, uncovering new facts and data, sharing critical updates in times of crisis, or broadcasting eyewitness reports. This important journalism takes time and expertise, and we want to ensure that it’s prioritized on Facebook.”
The company said it’ll prioritise articles in News Feed by “looking at groups of articles on a particular story topic and identifying the ones most often cited as the original source,” on a developing story or topic.
Initially, Facebook’s new algorithm change will start by identifying original reporting in English language news and will do the same for news in other languages in the future.
However, the company clarified that there won’t be any radical change in an average user’s News Feed but news publications will see an increase in their distribution though not much in their News Feed.
Facebook will also demote clickbait content and news articles without bylines. For editorial transparency, it has partnered with organizations like the Trust Project, SOS Support Public Broadcasting Coalition, Global Forum for Media Development, and Reporters Without Borders’ Journalism Trust Initiative, in addition to 20 other global media experts.