Facebook to prioritize news from 'high quality' and 'trustworthy' sources

Facebook to prioritize news from 'high quality' and 'trustworthy' sources

Troy Powers
January 20, 2018

The changes will also promote local news sources, which have suffered major subscription and readership declines as news consumption has migrated online.

The company said it would ask its more than 2 billion users to rank the news organizations they trusted in order to prioritize "high-quality news" over less trusted sources.

"There's too much sensationalism, misinformation and polarization in the world today", Zuckerberg wrote.

Letting Facebook users essentially decide which news outlets are reliable enough to be worthy of "distribution" on the site is a seriously risky endeavor.

News organizations immediately began considering how they would fare in the ranking.

What's more, this announcement to tweak the News Feed to put people first could be nothing more than a stunt.

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"For some time, we have argued that Facebook should give priority to news from trusted sources", he said in a statement.

News outlets that score well can expect to see their stories to be more widely distributed on Facebook, while those with lower scores might see less activity.

Facebook said that ranking by trustworthiness was not meant to directly impact any specific groups of publishers based on their size or ideology.

The social media platform announced that they are going to start separating it's news sources by how "trustworthy" its users think they are.

He wrote: "The hard question we've struggled with is how to decide what news sources are broadly trusted in a world with so much division".

On January 12, Mark Zuckerberg announced in a post that Facebook was making major changes in its newsfeed algorithm. Trump appropriated the term soon after by using it on his critics in the media, but Facebook has remained under scrutiny for how users can be exposed to news and news-related content, a portion of which was apparently produced with help from Russians trying to influence the election. For example, a right-leaning user Facebook polls might consider CNN extremely untrustworthy but rate a right-wing blog far higher - even if CNN is, in reality, a more accurate source of information about current affairs.