Who’s Filling Your Feed?

By Jenifer Wetterau

On Facebook, the News Feed is where you go to catch up on what’s happening with your friends and find the content you are most interested in. What you do in News Feed helps determine what you see in News Feed. You decide who you want to connect to, and what Pages and public figures you want to follow. But, more often than not, I find it clogged with annoying posts from friends and pages that I’m just not interested in. Are you tired of being bombarded by cat videos and “Which Real Housewife Are You” quizzes? Mark Zuckerberg feels our pain and Facebook has come to the rescue with a solution to give users more control over whose content fills their news feed.

We all have that friend who feels the need to tell the world she doesn’t like the weather or had a difficult commute. Instead of unfriending them, you can now elect to see less of their posts.

Before, you could click on the gray chevron in the upper-right corner of a post and choose “unfollow” and “I don’t want to see this.” Now Facebook offers more options, including “see less.”

How it works:
If you see a story you’re not interested in, you click the arrow in the top right of that story to hide it. When you hide a story you’ll have the option to ask to see less from that person or Page.

If you choose to see less, you are then given the option to unfollow them if you don’t want to see any of their stories in your News Feed. You can always visit News Feed settings to see everything you’ve unfollowed and have the option to re-follow them.

Facebook also launched a new settings page devoted to the News Feed. The update will also give users insights into why certain posts appear on their news feed and give them the choice to filter these posts.
Using this page, you can see who you’ve unfollowed in the last week and have the option to re-follow the person or page. You can also analyze which pages and people take up the most space on your News Feed and have the option to unfollow without unfriending them.

So what does this mean for brands? They need to be on point with their content, offering real value to their followers. When brands saw their organic reach on Facebook plummet last year, it was thought to be a result of people tagging their posts as spam. These new controls could have a similar consequence in the event of continuous uninteresting, irrelevant content or blatant product hawking.

According to Adam Mosseri, Facebook’s Product Management Director for News Feed, users can expect the news-feed settings page to include more options and customization in the future. Facebook is considering adding the ability to regulate posts on individual topics, such as science or breaking news. It might also show which posts came from specific types of friends, like “close friends” or members of a specific group.

What do you think of this customization option to “turn down” posts in your News Feed? Do you think many people will take advantage of it?

As always, I welcome any comments and if you like what you read, be social and share.

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