Facebook’s chief executive officer (CEO) Mark Zuckerberg has announced that the company will be rolling out a number of changes to the content that people will be seeing in their social media feeds. The move seeks to encourage more meaningful interactions between users and their friends and online contacts.
Zuckerberg wrote on a post on Thursday that the company has received feedback that public content from businesses, brands, and media have crowded people’s social media feed and have left little space for personal posts where people usually interact with others.
The company plans to change that, according to the social media mogul, citing research findings that using Facebook to connect with friends and family leads to improvement in a person’s well-being.
“The research shows that when we use social media to connect with people we care about, it can be good for our well-being,” wrote Zuckerberg. “We can feel more connected and less lonely, and that correlates with long-term measures of happiness and health. On the other hand, passively reading articles or watching videos — even if they’re entertaining or informative — may not be as good.”
As the changes roll out, users will see fewer news articles and marketing posts and advertisements, while more personal and family-friendly posts will start appearing in their feed more prominently.
Zuckerberg admitted that by making these changes, he anticipates that the time that people spend on Facebook will go down. “But I also expect the time you do spend on Facebook will be more valuable,” said Zuckerberg. “And if we do the right thing, I believe that will be good for our community and our business over the long term too.”
The changes are coming following criticisms received by the social media giant for its negative effects on society and for failing to prevent the spread of misinformation. Today, fake news, which allegedly affected the 2016 U.S. presidential election, is widespread on the social media platform all over the world.