Stories

Facebook limits "engagement bait" to clean up the News Feed

Beginning this week, Facebook will begin demoting individual posts from people and Pages (profiles of prominent people of businesses) that use slimy tactics to get people to engage with their content, such as using language that says "LIKE this if you were born in August," "SHARE this if you are a millennial," etc.

Why it matters: Facebook is trying to clean up the spam that has gamed its News Feed algorithm.

  • How it works: Facebook will demote these types of spammy posts that bait engagement. To do so, it's assigned teams to review and categorize hundreds of thousands of posts that can better inform a machine learning model to detect when pages post things just for the "like," share or comment.
  • Facebook also says that in the coming weeks it will apply "stricter demotions" in the News Feed for Pages that repeatedly use engagement bait to artificially game the algorithm. The tech giant warns that publishers that use "engagement bait" tactics "should expect their reach on these posts to decrease."
  • Some exceptions include posts that ask people for help, advice, or recommendations, such as circulating a missing child report, or raising money for a cause.