If you’re afraid of missing Facebook posts from your favorite people, Facebook has you covered. In an announcement made today, the social media platform declared that they were changing their news feed algorithm to place a stronger focus on friends and family, away from publishers and pages.
This update will likely cause reach and referral traffic to drop for some pages, many of which rely on Facebook traffic to grow their audiences. “Your average friend probably posts a few things a week, the average publisher you follow probably posts hundreds of things a day,” said Adam Mosseri, vice president of product management at Facebook to BuzzFeed News. “We’ve made some ranking changes to try to better connect people with their friends.”
However, links to articles and videos that individual users share will also be prioritized along with posts from friends and family members. In May, Facebook faced allegations that it was repressing conservative viewpoints in its trending topics feature that highlighted trending news stories.
“The growth and competition in the publisher ecosystem is really, really strong,” said Adam Mosseri, vice president of product management for the news feed at Facebook in an interview with reporters. “We’re worried that a lot of people using Facebook are not able to connect to friends and family as well because of that.”
Along with the updates, Facebook published a post clarifying its “news feed values,” including to prioritize friends and family, as well as to inform, to entertain and to spread ideas. Previous Facebook news feed changes caused some publications—including Upworthy, Elite Daily and Vice—to lose up to 51 percent of their traffic.