It’s a habit we’d rather not admit. Scrolling through our Facebook feed to get the day’s news. The News Feed is convenient and fast and like an espresso, easy to consume. However, the phenomenon of Fake News on social media is spreading. Unverified third-party news articles and accounts have sprung up on Facebook from almost every corner of the globe, influencing everything from viewpoints to elections and inundating users. In response to this, Facebook is set to radically alter its news feed algorithm, the formula that determines what reaches the top of our feeds.
What does the change mean to me?
The change prioritizes friends, family and posts that spark comments between them at the expense of public content and news outlets. CEO Mark Zuckerberg wrote on Facebook, “I’m changing the goal I give our product teams from focusing on helping you find relevant content to helping you have more meaningful social interactions.” Consequently, overall time on Facebook is set to decrease. Long term however, it should preserve Facebooks business. Expect more posts from friends seeking advice on places to travel, parents discussing bedtimes stories to read to children, or a video on a topic you care about.
How do I see news on my feed?
The good news is that you don’t have to give up on using Facebook as a news aggregator altogether. Altering a few settings can still help you see your News24, Huffington Post or Buzzfeed articles at the top of your Facebook feed. And what’s more, they will be verified!
1. First and foremost, make sure that you’ve “liked” and are “following” your preferred news outlet on Facebook.
2. If you’re using a PC or browser, go to your news outlets Facebook page and then choose the dropdown box on “Following.” From the options, select “See first.”
3. Alternatively, if you’re using a mobile device, go to your news outlets Facebook page, tap “Following, and choose “Get notifications.” from the subscriptions menu. Then tap “See first,”. Done and dusted.
If you don’t change this setting, you may need to start taking the added, perhaps prehistoric step of actually visiting all the news outlets you follow on Facebook individually. In our opinion that’s probably the better option, but we do realize old habits die hard.