Facebook Inc (FB) Embarks On an Anti-Clickbait Campaign

World’s most popular social networking platform Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) surprised everyone by adopting a strong stance against ‘Clickbait, a strategy often employed by marketing entities to ensure that their posts are read by maximum number of users. The intention underlying this action is explained as an attempt to weed out news feeds that may not be qualitative in terms of content but manage to tempt users by piquing on their curiosity.

As an example, Joyce Tang, who happens to be a product specialist with the company cited the following headline –

“You’ll never believe which two stars got into a fight on the red carpet last night!! Click to find out which starlet they were fighting over!!”

She was supported by the research scientist namely Khalid El-Arini who said that such headlines were only meant to serve the purpose of bait that would lure people to click on them while the content itself was not as substantial. They admitted that Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) algorithms in the past did encourage clickbait headlines and their main purpose was to ensure that the sites in question received high-density traffic and ranked well in the process.

Facebook (FB)

Labeling these news feeds as being spammy, the two officials said that they had been notified by a large number of users about not wanting to see or read such content. According to them, as many as 80% users of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) revealed their preference for news feeds that clearly indicated the type of content which would follow. Based on this, the new algorithm has been designed to adjudge the worth of the article by clocking the time spent by users to read it. Logic behind using this metric has been explained as follows –

“One way is to look at how long people spend reading an article away from Facebook. If people click on an article and spend time reading it, it suggests they clicked through to something valuable. If they click through to a link and then come straight back to Facebook, it suggests that they didn’t find something that they wanted.”

To what degree people respond to the story in terms of sharing and discussion will also be analyzed by the website in order to judge the value of the content. While for users of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), this step is a harbinger of good news, for sites which depend on this platform for heavy traffic, this latest development could spell make-or-break consequences.

This article has been written by Vinita Basu.

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