Much has been made by Facebook lately about making sure user’s newsfeeds are full of interesting, relevant content. It’s been the reasoning behind many of the algorithm changes that have penalised Pages’ content in favour of content from ‘real’ people that you are friends with on the network.
But lately my newsfeed has been jam packed with irrelevant stuff – not from brands – but from the friends of my friends, people I don’t know at all.
A quick glance through my Facebook newsfeed tonight reveals plenty of stories like “Random Person Changed their Profile Picture” (I’m seeing that because one of my connections likes it – I have no idea who these people are). Or “Somebody You Know Commented on the Status of Somebody You Don’t Know”.
To be honest, it’s a real turnoff and I’ve not really felt the need to check my Facebook newsfeed much lately while it’s full of this stuff. I have to wade through tonnes of it to get to anything really interesting. And the only reason why I stick with it is the ‘fear’ of missing something important from an actual friend.
I realise I am biased, because I manage Facebook Pages for organisations, but if anything one of the more useful and relevant things about my Facbeook newsfeed is when it brings up news and events from Pages that I’ve specifically chosen to ‘like’. For example, my family recently joined the National Trust and I would certainly be interested to see more of their posts with ideas about family outings, things to do in my area and so on. I haven’t seen a post from my local council for a while, or from the local residents group that posts usually quite interesting stuff about my neighbourhood. Whilst, admittedly, not everything they share is relevant to me, it is probably more interesting that hearing what somebody I vaguely know from outside the school gates thought of a complete stranger’s new haircut.
Basically, I have chosen to like the pages I’ve liked for a reason. I’m happy to see their content. It’s up to them to make that content relevant and interesting. If I decide it isn’t, I will ‘unlike’ them.
And of course, I’m interested in seeing what my (actual) friends are posting about themselves – I don’t want to miss big announcements like babies or weddings, that kind of thing. But sadly if one of my real friends spends a lot of time liking or commenting on other people’s statuses then all that is just becoming like a load of spam in my newsfeed.
It would be great if you could choose to see ‘more’ of the posts you like from pages you are interested in , and less of the inane updates about what Random Strangers are eating for dinner. But Facebook is such a control freak that it would much rather decide this stuff for you. However, it isn’t going to do anything for their stated objective of making the newsfeed more relevant and engaging for users. Certainly not this user, anyway.
Is anyone else having this issue, or is it just me?