Facebook sorts old from new with algorithm changes to News Feed

6 Aug 2013

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Facebook has announced an update to the News Feed ranking algorithm that will see organic stories that people did not scroll down far enough to see reappear near the top if stories are still receiving ‘likes’ and comments.

Facebook announced the changes in a new series called News Feed FYI blog posts aimed at page owners and users.

The social network said that over the last year it had seen an increase in likes, comments and shares from News Feed.

It cited early data that suggests the new algorithm change improves the experience of News Feed by 5pc in the number of likes, comments and shares on organic stories from friends and an 8pc increase in the number of likes, comments and shares on organic stories from pages.

Early effects of Facebook’s News Feed algorithm changes

facebook algorithm changes to News feed

Previously people would have read 57pc of the stories in their News Feeds, on average, and didn’t scroll far enough down to see the other 43pc.

When unread stories resurfaced the fraction of stories read increased to 70pc.

“The data suggests that this update does a better job of showing people the stories they want to see, even if they missed them the first time,” Facebook said.

“For Page owners, this means their most popular organic Page posts have a higher chance of being shown to more people, even if they’re more than a few hours old.”

Social network image via Shutterstock

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Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com