I took Facebook’s News Feed survey, and so should you

i took facebooks news feed survey and so should you facebook test

Today I logged in to Facebook and was promptly greeted to an idiotic political rant from one of my friends. After hitting the “X” and marking I didn’t want to see anymore updates from this person, Facebook asked me if I’d like to take a quick survey to help improve News Feed.

Boy, would I!

Facebook’s News Feed is arguably the platform’s biggest problem, right up there with privacy concerns. Posts appear out of order chronologically, and the fix for that leaves much to be deserved. Sponsored posts and ads are multiplying, and taking up more physical space than before. Sometimes, an update about an event sticks around for days after its relevant. And others, you see an item about something someone you barely know posted on. It’s an endless barrage of information you don’t care about that you have to mine through for a single gem that sparks your interest.

So yes, yes Facebook: I will take all the quizzes in the world if it can even slightly improve this mess.

The poll took me through 10 Facebook posts and asked me to rate them on a scale of five, one indicating I’m very uninterested and five indicating I’m very interested. What I learned is that Facebook is trying to find out if we want to see posts with more positive sentiments …

fb poll 1

Or more photo stories.

fb poll 9

And of course, how exactly we feel about ads. (Seriously,  need you ask?)

fb 4

It’s hard to answer some of these, though, because I don’t know what characteristic of a post Facebook is trying to gauge my interest on. I like photo stories, but I don’t really need to see more pictures of babies (I’m not a hard-hearted cat lady, there’s just a lot already, OK?). I appreciate positivity, but a post saying thanks for the birthday wishes isn’t really interesting to me. 

Despite some of the failings of this type of quiz, it indicates that Facebook is attempting to find a better algorithm. 

The social network is putting other feelers out there, too. A Facebook Feedback Panel is out there, comprised of 10,000 users, who are giving their thoughts on Facebook to help it keep the site true to users’ wants and needs – or as close as possible.

And you might start these types of quick polls pop up on the right-hand side bar, which are basically trying to see how well ads are even working.

fb poll

It’s easy to ignore these tiny pleas, and I wouldn’t blame you for doing so: We’ve all given Facebook an unhealthy amount of our information, why directly help it even more? But for some reason, when I reached the end of my 10 posts to rate, I kept going – rating post after post after post.

Facebook doesn’t often ask you for your input, and when it does, it’s in that flippant way that indicates you’re welcome to comment but shouldn’t expect a response.

We’ve gotten angry enough though, and multiplying stories about users fleeing Facebook might be making enough of an impact to help us get back a little of the original site we obsessively combed over for hours.

So next time you “X” out of an angry friend’s political rant, take the survey. Targeted ads aren’t going anywhere, and neither are “so and so Likes this!” posts – but I do want to see more hilarious, off-the-cuff commentary from my friends, and more photos they’ve just posted (not those from last month that are still accruing thumbs ups and comments).

I don’t want to stop using Facebook because it serves a purpose and it’s still a useful resource for me – and hell, because I’ve invested a lot of time. Consider tossing your tiny voice into Facebook’s vast ocean … because things certainly can’t get any worse.

fb thanks
Emerging Tech

Burgers are just the beginning: Embracing the future of lab-grown everything

You’ve almost certainly heard of the 'farm to fork' movement, but what about 'lab to table'? Welcome to the fast-evolving world of lab-grown meat. Is this the future of food as we know it?
Movies & TV

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker trailer gets 111 million views in just 24 hours

Star Wars: Episode IX - The Rise of Skywalker's first teaser trailer and plot details have arrived. Here's everything we know about the movie before it premieres in December 2019.
Movies & TV

First reactions say that Avengers: Endgame will make you laugh and cry

The events of Avengers: Infinity War changed the Marvel Cinematic Universe in some big ways and left fans wondering how its heroes can possibly recover. Here's everything we know about Avengers: Endgame, the sequel to Infinity War.
Movies & TV

Clip from John Wick: Chapter 3 confirms the dog is totally fine

John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum, the third installment of the wildly successful action series that stars Keanu Reeves as a deadly assassin forced out of retirement, hits theaters in May 2019. Here's everything we know about it so far.
Social Media

Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp went down worldwide for 2 hours this morning

Chaos erupted on the internet this morning, as Facebook, Instagram, and Whatsapp all went down from 6:30 a.m. to approximately 9 a.m. Thousands of users were unable to access the sites or send or receive Whatsapp messages.

Skype screen sharing for mobile will let you share your swipes on dating apps

Skype is prepping the launch of screen sharing for mobile so you can share your swipes on dating apps, shop with buddies, or, perhaps, show a PowerPoint presentation to coworkers. It's in beta just now, but anyone can try it.
Social Media

Facebook toys with mixing Stories and News Feed into one swipeable carousel

Facebook's News Feed could look a lot like Stories if a prototype the social media giant is working on rolls out to users. The design change mixes Stories and News Feed posts into a full-screen slideshow that users swipe left to navigate.
Social Media

No more moon showers as Facebook Messenger’s dark mode gets official rollout

Facebook Messenger launched a dark mode last month, but to activate it you had to message the crescent moon to someone. Now it's been rolled out officially, and it can be accessed in a far more sensible way — via settings.

Twitter has revealed a launch date for its handy hide replies features

Twitter has revealed a launch date for a feature that lets users hide replies to their tweets. The hope is that it will help the original poster filter out offensive or irrelevant content from conversation threads.
Smart Home

Oh, Zuck, no! Facebook rumored to be creating a voice assistant to rival Alexa

Facebook hasn't been a big player in the smart speaker market, but that may be changing: The social media giant is reportedly working on a digital assistant to compete against Alexa and others.
Social Media

Facebook says it unintentionally uploaded email contacts of 1.5 million users

Facebook says that over the last two years it unintentionally uploaded the email contacts of 1.5 million users as they signed up to the social networking service. The process has ended and the email addresses are being deleted.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Facebook data security, Ubisoft helps Notre Dame, and more

Join DT Live as we discuss Facebook security issues, Ubisoft's plan to help rebuild Notre Dame, and more. We are also joined by Emily Teteut of Snap the Gap, Jennifer Sendrow of New York Public Radio, and DJ and producer Zeke Thomas.

After controversial video, China bans ‘Leica’ on social media

A video that referenced Tiananmen Square got the name of the camera company Leica banned from the social media platform Weibo. Leica says the video wasn't an officially sanctioned promotion.

Photography News: Instagram’s disappearing likes, the best photos of the year

In this week's Photography News, see why Instagram is testing a version that excludes the number of likes a post gets. Also, see the impressive winners from two photography contests and the latest features coming to the Fujifilm X-T3.