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Facebook emphasizes friends, not news

MNA Science & Tech Desk: Facebook Inc began to change the way it filters posts and videos on its centrepiece News Feed, the start of what Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg said would be a series of changes in the design of the world’s largest social network.

Zuckerberg, in a sweeping post on Facebook, said the company would change the filter for the News Feed to prioritize what friends and family share, while reducing the amount of non-advertising content from publishers and brands.

Facebook, which owns four of the world’s most popular smartphone apps including Instagram, has for years prioritized material that its complex computer algorithms think people will engage with through comments, ‘likes’ or other ways of showing interest.

Zuckerberg, the company’s 33-year-old co-founder, said that would no longer be the goal.

‘I’m changing the goal I give our product teams from focusing on helping you find relevant content to helping you have more meaningful social interactions,’ Zuckerberg wrote.

The shift was likely to mean that the time people spend on Facebook and some measures of engagement would go down in the short term, he wrote, but he added it would be better for users and for the business over the long term, reported news agency.

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