Facebook just announced some changes to how it handles the News Feed, and what posts are chosen to be displayed. Facebook’s Feed Quality Program continuously monitors the activity of users and takes active feedback on their experiences. Facebook found that likes, shares, comments and clicks are not the most meaningful indicator of relevance of a post.
Serious events or sad news were as important to the users, but these were not likely to get the same responses from people. Facebook has now incorporated the time people spend on each article in its feedback loop, and uses that to judge the relevance of new posts. If users spend a long time reading a post, but do not like, share or comment on it, then Facebook knows that news from that source is important to the user. If users click through on an article, and quickly navigate back, then that is an indication that the user did not find what was expected in the article when it was clicked.
Moreover, there is a change in the clumping together of articles from one source. As most users do not like to see multiple articles from one source, Facebook will stop showing them all at once even if they are posted in rapid succession. Diversity of post sources was also identified as something that is more enriching to users. These changes should be more subtle rather than obvious, as Facebook anticipates that there wont be significant changes to most pages.