Everybody knows how annoying clickbait can be and while some of us have probably seen it so many times that they can now ignore it naturally, others can’t really ignore it and find it extremely disturbing and unnecessary. As a result, Facebook has decided to implement an algorithm that will reduce the number of clickbait headlines that users see on their Wall.
This isn’t Facebook’s first attempt at getting rid of unwanted content. In 2014, it developed a different algorithm for clickbait headlines based on how fast the users who would click on news links would come back. The speed was an indication of how uninteresting the content was and was therefore a type of clickbait headline.
However, for this new anti-clickbait algorithm, Facebook analyzed thousands headlines and has come up with two defining attributes for clickbait headlines. The first attribute refers to withholding information and the second one refers to creating misleading expectations. Facebook will soon update its News Feed with this algorithm that will seek out the common phrases associated with these two attributes and then filter them.
Two user experience researchers, Alex Peysakhovich and Kristin Henderix, said that people specifically asked to see less clickbait headlines because they mislead people by leaving out important information and therefore bait people into finding out the answer. The two researchers also mentioned that while the 2014 update reduced the number of clickbait news, it wasn’t enough and users are still complaining that they want to see clear headlines in their feed that will not waste their time unnecessarily.
There have been other updates on regarding related issues on Facebook and the ongoing goal is to always have entertaining, meaningful and informative content, free of time-wasting useless information. One of those related updates includes one that emphasized posts from family and friends over other posts.
Finally, the researchers also said that Web Pages that rely on clickbait news headlines should expect their content to not be distributed as widely as before.
As for the users who want to avoid clickbait news altogether, they are advised to follow Facebook’s best practices recommendations for their News Feed.
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