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Facebook Pushes Local News To Combat Low-Quality Content
01 February 2018, 12:13 | Camille Rivera
By Mark Athitakis Jan 30 2018
Looking to pacify its massive audience - and keep its ad revenue rolling in - Facebook launched a tool allowing users to check if they followed Kremlin-funded pages.
Facebook's actual numbers were strong.
As we announced earlier this month, we expect the amount of news in News Feed to go down as we focus on meaningful social interactions with family and friends over passive consumption.
After first dismissing claims that Facebook was part of the "fake news" problem, Zuckerberg said in January that his primary goal for 2018 is "fixing" the sites biggest problems, including misinformation, harassment and election integrity. Its total user growth was up 14 percent over the same period previous year, to 2.13 billion users, about what was expected. User surveys will help the tech firm decide what outlet is trustworthy.
Reading more local news, he noted, can also motivate people to get more involved in their communities.
"Local news helps us understand the issues that matter in our communities and affect our lives", Zuckerberg wrote. "In 2018, we're focused on making sure Facebook isn't just fun to use, but also good for people's wellbeing and for society".
"When I traveled around the country previous year, one theme people kept telling me is how much we all have in common if we can get past some of the most divisive national issues", Zuckerberg said in his post. The new initiative will start in the United States before expanding to other countries.
In 2017, about two-thirds of Americans got at least some of their news on social media, according to the Pew Research Center.
Marketing specialists in social media along with travel agency owners have been complaining for years that changes made by Facebook to news feeds algorithms make it harder to promote businesses on the platform and reach new customers with free publications.
Meanwhile, U.S. newspapers continue to face declining circulation and ad revenue.
The company also beat revenue expectations for the quarter ending December 31: Facebook generated $12.97 billion revenue during the holiday quarter, compared to $8.8 billion during the same quarter in 2016.
Facebook's revenues topped $12.7bn for the quarter and the company made a profit of $4.26bn.
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