Facebook’s News Feed is a fairly personal place for most people, and Facebook has announced that they are implementing some new checks and balances using new criteria to help make it even more personal and relevant, filtering out sensationalist headlines, clickbait, fake news, and things users do not care about. Facebook will begin looking at factors like how close a person or a page is to a viewer and real-time signals like comments from friends to determine where a News Feed item should be displayed. The social media giant is also going to start implementing an AI solution to police News Feed pages, showing things that are less likely to be spam or fake higher up on News Feeds.
While tweaks that remove fake and irrelevant News Feed postings are always welcome, one of the more interesting items on the list here is the AI functionality Facebook just announced. Not that long ago, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that he had made it his personal goal to build his own AI assistant similar to Jarvis from Marvel’s Iron Man. While that AI and this one are obviously unrelated, the fervor on Facebook’s part is clear, and AI technology is advancing by leaps and bounds. This particular AI makes use of machine learning, having been fed verified fake news stories and spam so it could be trained on how to figure out what is unlikely to be worth a user’s time.
In the name of breaking with prior accusations of censorship, Facebook is not yet having the bot eliminate posts entirely, or even issue warnings or bans to those whose postings trigger its detection mechanism. Since users’ News Feeds are algorithmically generated, most people will have to scroll past a lot of interesting and fairly relevant stuff to find things that the AI labeled as being spam or fake news. News that Facebook determines to be irrelevant to a user’s interests will be in a similar position, though such postings will still rank higher than sensationalism and fake news. Of course, as always, any user who does not want their News Feed policed and arranged can simply opt to view their feed chronologically.