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Anorak | Shock and horror as Facebook seeks to make a profit

Shock and horror as Facebook seeks to make a profit

by | 24th, October 2017

What do you think of Facebook? It’s pretty good, isn’t it. You can post stuff about your dog, website or uniquely gifted children and watch as people write ‘Bless” and “OMG” beneath the images and breaking news. Having throttled post reach – the number of people who actually see a post from your Facebook Page on their timeline is typically around 5%; and then invited users to pay up to ‘boost’ that figure – Facebook is looking for new ways to charge its users. It’s pay-to-play.

Facebook is testing moving publishers’ posts out of people’s news feeds unless the companies pay thousands of dollars to reach their audience.

The new format is being tried in six countries, including Slovakia, Serbia and Sri Lanka, and moves any posts that do not come from users’ friends and family into a secondary feed unless they are paid for. Paid promotions still appear in news feeds as normal.

Pay or vanish.

The change could wreck the business models of small publishers who depend on organic sharing on Facebook for a large part of their audience. It could also have a big impact on larger companies such as BuzzFeed that create content designed to go viral on the site, as “likes” cause Facebook’s algorithm to promote them in news feeds.

Of course it’ll hurt publishers – that’s part of the idea. But if you pay, you an use the service.

Critics yesterday accused Facebook of devious tactics, in giving publishers a huge organic reach and only later charging for that audience.

It’s not a public service, however long and loud Facebook founder and majority owner Mark Zuckenberg tells us his site is a force for world good. It’s a money-making machine. Facebook wants global harmoney [sic].

Facebook has issued a statement (via Recode):

“With all of the possible stories in each person’s feed, we always work to connect people with the posts they find most meaningful. People have told us they want an easier way to see posts from friends and family, so we are testing two separate feeds, one as a dedicated space with posts from friends and family and another as a dedicated space for posts from Pages. To understand if people like these two different spaces, we will test a few things, such as how people engage with videos and other types of posts. These tests will start in Sri Lanka, Bolivia, Slovakia, Serbia, Guatemala, and Cambodia. We have no current plans to roll this out globally.”

One Slovakaisn user explains:

 



Posted: 24th, October 2017 | In: Money, News, Tabloids Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink