Facebook killing controversial ‘Trending’ feature, breaking news alerts and more coming

02 June, 2018, 03:25 | Author: Julian Harrison

"We will remove Trending from Facebook next week and we will also remove products and third-party partner integrations that rely on the Trends API".

Facebook's "trending" topics section had become a focal point of such criticisms. It fit nicely into CEO Mark Zuckerberg's pledge just a year earlier to make Facebook its users' "personal newspaper".

And so further commitments to change were made, "to restore any loss of trust in the Trending Topics feature", from the bias that Facebook couldn't find.

The operational and algorithmic surgery evidently did not have the desired effect.

Problems with the trending section emerged in 2016, when the company was accused of bias against conservatives, based on comments by an anonymous former contractor.

"From research we found that over time people found the product to be less and less useful", Facebook's head of news products, Alex Hardiman, said in a blog post on Friday.




The social network is also testing a section called "Today In" that aims to connect users to the latest breaking news from local publishers in their respective cities.

"I consider us to be a technology company because the primary thing that we do is have engineers who write code and build product and services for other people", he told Congress. These efforts will be funded by Facebook itself, the company said.

Breaking News Label: A test we're running with 80 publishers across North America, South America, Europe, India and Australia lets publishers put a "breaking news" indicator on their posts in News Feed.

One reason the feature is so little used could be that it's not immediately visible on Facebook's app or mobile version, where most people use the site. It also proved problematic in ways that hinted at Facebook's later problems with fake news, political balance and the limitations of AI in managing the human world.

Another feature, called Today In shows people breaking news in their area from local publishers, officials and organisations. It was available only in five countries and accounted for less than 1.5 percent of clicks to the websites of news publishers, according to the company.

Hardiman provided some examples of what the site may replace the section with in the near future.

Recommended:

  • 8th-grader wins national spelling bee

    8th-grader wins national spelling bee

    Yet amid the bigger Bee, returning spellers continued their dominance , even though a first-time competitor won. Karthik and Naysa were the last two standing of the initial 516 spellers. "I think it's wonderful ".
    Zinedine Zidane's Real Madrid exit shows he'll always surprise us - Christian Karembeu

    Zinedine Zidane's Real Madrid exit shows he'll always surprise us - Christian Karembeu

    The club loves to change managers, no boss is ever truly safe there and talk is already rife about who will succeed Zidane. Zidane was a phenomenal player for Real Madrid , winning La Liga and Champions League trophies with the club.
    Why you must catch up on lost sleep in weekends

    Why you must catch up on lost sleep in weekends

    Possibly, long weekend sleep may compensate for short weekday sleep . "It's a fundamental part of our biology, like breathing". People in their late teens and 20s slept on average for seven hours a night during the week but 8.5 hours on days off.
  • Sky Sports reporter reveals leading candidate to be new Chelsea FC manager

    Sky Sports reporter reveals leading candidate to be new Chelsea FC manager

    Zidane announced his departure Thursday, less than a week after guiding Madrid to a third successive Champions League crown. Zidane has now won nine trophies since replacing Rafael Benitez in the Santiago Bernabeu dugout in January 2016.
    United States  to impose limits on some Chinese visas

    United States to impose limits on some Chinese visas

    Details of the investment and export controls will be announced by June 30 and the final tariff list will be published by June 15. The White House also says the United States is planning new investment restrictions and export controls.
    Israel minister threatens occupation of besieged Gaza as tensions soar

    Israel minister threatens occupation of besieged Gaza as tensions soar

    Tuesday's exchange of fire came after weeks of deadly unrest along the fence between Israel and the blockaded Palestinian enclave. The furore began after IDF soldiers shot and killed 62 protesters on Monday, and injured more than 2,000.
  • Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey teaser hints at an adventure in Greece

    Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey teaser hints at an adventure in Greece

    The clip shows what seems to be a Spartan-looking character kicking another solider off a cliff; an homage to Frank Miller's 300. If true, the RPG elements of the new game will go through the roof making it the most immersive title to date.
    PH to raise militarization issue in meeting with China

    PH to raise militarization issue in meeting with China

    Mattis was heading to Hawaii to attend a change-of-command ceremony for the US military's Pacific Command. The current head, Admiral Harry Harris, has been nominated to be the new ambassador to South Korea.
    National Football League  owners note Donald Trump's attempt to influence anthem views

    National Football League owners note Donald Trump's attempt to influence anthem views

    Those deposed were required to turn over phone and email records related to Kaepernick, who has not played since the 2016 season. The owner said he became against kneeling when he felt that the message from the players was being interpreted as anti-military.
  • South Korea want more talks with North Korea before summit

    South Korea want more talks with North Korea before summit

    The White House has said that preparations will continue while the final decision on whether to proceed with the summit is made. Russian Federation says Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will travel to North Korea for talks on Thursday.
    Boston Celtics: 3 reasons the season is over

    Boston Celtics: 3 reasons the season is over

    The only thing he can do to exceed it is go ahead and win another championship against the Warriors or Rockets in a couple weeks. King Lebron scored 35 points with 15 rebounds and nine assists to lead his team to win the Eastern Conference series 4-3.
    Dani Carvajal to join up with Spain squad, RFEF confirm

    Dani Carvajal to join up with Spain squad, RFEF confirm

    The medical team is optimistic that Salah will be ready to play for the Egypt football team in the upcoming world cup (sic). The tears of Dani Carvajal in the first half of the Champions League final were what nobody in the stadium wanted to see.


Popular

Heat for tweet: Browns' Randall amazed by jersey posting
A jersey costs around NZ$120, so Randall would have to spend nearly NZ$64 million if he was to honour his promise. For example, Randall meant to attend Games 3 and 4 of the Finals in Cleveland, but now he's unsure.

Drake blackface photo used by Pusha T to promote new track
According to XXL, Leyes tweeted at Pusha T's manager, Steven Victor, to "please get Push to take the Drake photo down asap". Pusha posted photos of Adidon and the alleged Drake baby mother on social media in efforts to poke fun at his arch-rival.

Freebies at Dunkin' Donut and Krispy Kreme for National Donut Day
Held annually on the first Friday of June, the National Donut Day was first established by The Salvation Army in Chicago in 1938. We've rounded up the top deals for this year's donut celebration, giving you the chance to enjoy the sweet treat free of charge.

New body cam video released in Memorial Day beach arrest
She said the officer tackled her to the ground, forcing her to black out. "She assaults them, she spits at them, she kicks them". Police on Wednesday said the incident could have gone another direction. "She probably would have just gotten a citation".

Zidane steps down as Real Madrid coach
The 45-year-old announced his departure in a surprise press conference at Real Madrid's training ground on Thursday morning. Real president Perez added: "This was a totally unexpected decision, Zidane informed me of his choice yesterday".

Arkady Babchenko reveals he faked his death to thwart Moscow plot
A video on social media shows Babchenko's newsroom colleagues cheering and applauding as he suddenly appears on the TV screen. Babchenko served in the Russian army and fought during the first separatist war in Chechnya during the 1990s.

New couple alert? Priyanka Chopra, Nick Jonas spark dating rumours
According to E News report, Priyanka and Nick appeared to be enjoying each other's company and were both laughing a lot but didn't show any PDA.

Apple Releases iOS 11.4 With Messages in iCloud and AirPlay 2
HomePod 11.4 also brings stereo pairing to HomePod speakers, allowing users to set up two of them in a stereo configuration. Here's a complete tutorial on how you can enable Messages in iCloud in iOS 11 / iOS 11.4 and how you can use it too.

Diogo Dalot: Manchester United close to deal for Porto right-back
Manchester United and Chelsea will fight it out to sign Barcelona defender Jordi Alba , according to reports in Sport . Porto are understood to have turned down bids below Dalot's release clause a year ago .

Messi announces desire to play for Newell's Old Boys
Barcelona star Lionel Messi has reiterated that he would never consider playing for another team in Europe. Jorge Sampaoli's men kick off their World Cup campaign by taking on Iceland on June 16.