Facebook will push local stories in news feed

Facebook feed changes and what businesses can do next

Facebook feed changes and what businesses can do next

Facebook on Monday said its News Feed is being updated once again, this time to prioritize local news stories so you can see topics that have a direct impact on you and your community.

Sure, local newspapers aren't exactly doing great, and as a concept, funneling more traffic their way sounds like a stellar idea, but the reality is not almost as rosy.

Facebook is going to start showing users more local news in their News Feed, the company announced on Monday.

Back to local: Facebook says it will identify local publishers by looking at ones that are "clicked on by readers in a tight geographic area".

Mark Zuckerberg addressed the change through his own page, citing a recent fact-finding trip around the U.S.as a basis for this new feature.

It is not just local news services like Nextdoor that will benefit from the changes, Facebook executives say.

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Facebook recently announced that it's changing the behind-the-scenes formula that determines what you see in your news feed.

"As we roll this out, you'll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media", Zuckerberg said. Facebook will start by looking at US -based publishers but says it intends to expand the effort into other countries. For more, see our Publisher Guidelines. But it's really meant to promote local and regional publishers. This year, he offered a far more substantial challenge: to fix his social media platform. "All of our work to reduce false news, misinformation, clickbait, sensationalism and inauthentic accounts still applies".

Zuckerberg travelled around the USA past year, visiting with Facebook users. This is great news for local publishers who tend to not have as much reach as larger sources, and Mr. Zuckerberg hopes that these updates will help to make people more civically aware.

The company will elevate posts that ignite conversations and meaningful interactions between friends while demoting the many videos, news stories and business posts that users consume passively - without commenting and sharing.

If people follow a local publisher, that content is now more likely to appear prominently in their feeds, Zuckerberg said.

"Research suggests that reading local news is directly correlated with civic engagement", he said.

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