This AMAZING story about clickbait may never appear in your Facebook feed. Plus a cat video
Facebook is cracking down on clickbait, those spammy (yet somehow irresistible) headlines that clog up your News Feed. In the next few weeks, Facebook will roll out an update that will cut down on how often you see headlines that overpromise, mislead or withhold information to trick you into clicking, according to a Thursday blog post from research scientist Alex Peysakhovich and user experience researcher Kristin Hendrix.
The social network is focusing on two types of clickbait. The first are “curiosity gap” headlines where users need to click through to see what an article is about — think, “you’ll never believe what popular star has a secret twin!” The second are headlines that exaggerate an article so much that they set up misleading expectations for users.
After analyzing “tens of thousands” posts, Facebook identified phrases that commonly show up in those type of headlines. The new updates will basically work like a spam filter that makes those posts — as well as domains and pages from which they come — show up lower in your News Feed.
Clickbait has been a gripe among users for years — in fact, some have rebelled against clickbait posts by going back and unliking clickbait stories after realizing they were duped. And Facebook has been actively trying to fight back against the spammy posts for two years. At that point, Facebook started to prioritize posts that had more shares, likes and comments – rather than just the ones that got the most clicks.
Many users will probably welcome Facebook’s upcoming change, but it also shows just how much control the company business choices have over publishers who increasingly depend on the social network for traffic.