You are provided with more control by Facebook over what you will be seeing while making use of the social media platform – especially, what is appearing in the News Feed as well as who is permitted to make comments on your posts. Only recently, it was announced by the social network that quite a few modifications are going to be introduced by it, all of which are intended to enhance trust and transparency in the manner in which its algorithms function.
A blog post was published by Nick Clegg, the vice president of global affairs of Facebook, simultaneously when the tools had been declared where he took issue with the concept that the algorithms of Facebook propel polarization and also manipulate individuals for the purpose of making a profit. According to him, the tools which have been introduced recently are part of a more significant move for depicting individuals how their experience can be affected by the social media by their personal connection with the algorithm and also for enhancing transparency into the manner in which the company operates.
He mentioned in the blog post that these measures happen to be part of a major shift in the thinking of the company regarding the manner in which it provides individuals with a greater comprehension of, and control over the manner in which content is ranked by its algorithms, and how it will be able to make use of content ranking as well as distribution at the same time for making sure that the platform affects the society positively as a whole.
Similar to all the other social networks, Facebook has been under more inspection from regulators, lawmakers, celebrities, as well as advocacy groups who assert that not much has been done by the company for curbing the spread of misinformation, hate speech, along with other unpleasant content on their platforms. Mark Zuckerberg, the Facebook CEO, made an appearance before Congress along with Jack Dorsey, the Twitter CEO, and Sundar Pichai, the Google CEO, to testify regarding the manner in which misinformation was handled by them. One particular way in which social networks are trying to address issues regarding malicious content would be to provide users with more insight or control over the manner in which their content is going to get ranked on their feeds.
The capability of figuring out what content is going to appear in your News Feed and also in what particular order are going to be most essential among the new tools. Right now, you have the power for figuring out whether you will be seeing the content material appearing chronologically as it is being posted, or, as is presently standard on this platform, to see what has been decided by the algorithm of Facebook to show you. It will also be possible for you to filter to view content only from the favorites in case none of these alternatives provides you with the experience you are after.
It will be imperative to search for the Feed Filters Bar which should be appearing at the top of the News Feed for accessing all these new options. In this way, it will be possible for you to shift between the feeds. A tool was introduced by Facebook back in October which enabled you to select as many as 30 favorite pages as well as people from whom you enjoy seeing content the most; therefore, make certain to choose some accounts for viewing content from prior to selecting the particular option in the Feed Filters Bar.
At times, content is placed by Facebook in your News Feed from individuals or pages which are not followed by you actively, and this can be quite confusing in the long run. It will go on doing this, even with the innovative controls; however, now, it will explain to you why this content is shown to you. Once all these “recommended for you” posts pop up in the feed of yours, you will have the option of tapping “why am I seeing this” and this must be providing you with more context regarding the decision.
Apart from this, you will also be able to control who will be capable of commenting on your personal public posts. This might vary from anybody who will be able to see the post to only the particular pages and individuals tagged by you. Facebook mentioned in a recent press release that the hope would be that it will be possible for you to restrict undesirable interactions and also participate in conversations which appear to be meaningful to you.
The remarks made by Clegg were not adequate to fend off the company’s ongoing criticism. Only recently, Clegg’s post was called a skeptical and spectacular display of gaslighting by a team of Facebook critics refer to as the Real Facebook Oversight Board. The Real Facebook Oversight Board mentioned in a statement that he offers an easily disproved and deliberately false take on both political reach, as well as incentives of Facebook, which have been built wholly around maximizing profits by exploiting democracy and human life.
In his post, it was promised by Clegg that more modifications are going to be introduced by Facebook later this year for helping enhance transparency around the manner in which the News Feed algorithm functions. More surveys will likewise be launched by the company for trying to comprehend how individuals feel regarding their personal experiences on Facebook and how they adjust the algorithm consequently.
It was argued by Clegg that despite recommendations to the contrary, Facebook does not have any polarizing effect on society and the algorithms are not incentivized for promoting misleading and sensational content. He mentioned that it is not in the interest of Facebook – reputationally or financially – to turn up the temperature continually and force users in the direction of content which was even more extreme. In a particular interview, Clegg also added that the company likewise requires providing more evidence and information regarding what particular content happens to be popular on News Feed.
The Facebook executive encourages individuals to view themselves as having a connection with the algorithms of the company instead of simply being its passive victims. He mentioned that since social media as well as the machines on which it has been built are going to stay, the time is perfect to make our truce with them.