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Facebook Changes News Feed Algorithm to Favor Live Broadcasts

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It doesn’t matter if it was broadcasted live if you missed that Zuckerberg talk or that sports event you were looking forward to. After realizing that users are three times more inclined to watch Live streams than saved ones, Facebook has changed its policy.


From now on, the News Feed will favor live broadcasts, in an attempt to catch up with Twitter’s Periscope, as both Twitter and Periscope have the great advantage of being inherently real-time platforms.

More than that, Periscope sends notifications to your followers when you start to broadcast, in addition to featuring them instantly at the top of Twitter’s timeline.

On the other hand, Facebook’ News Feed wasn’t designed to favor real-time content. Its algorithm was made to show the user the best posts, even if they were uploaded some hours ago. But this policy doesn’t work that well where Live video is concerned.

Unlike Periscope, where your videos are deleted after 24 hours, Facebook’s Live service allows you to permanently save your streams. But watching Live videos as they happen is the real deal, where the interaction, urgency, and raw unpredictability fuse together for a great experience.

That’s why Facebook announced today that its News Feed ranking algorithm has suffered some changes. Now, videos that are currently streaming on Live will be listed higher in your feed than older saved streams.

It’s such a sensible decision that we’re surprised Facebook hasn’t made it when it launched the Live feature, but probably it’s better later than never. Live was first inaugurated in August 2015 for celebrities only, but it eventually rolled out to Pages and Verified Profiles and eventually became accessible to all iOS users this January.

Just last week, Android users also received the option to broadcast. Instead of spamming your friends or fans each time you broadcast, Facebook has decided only to send push notifications if the stream comes from a Page you recently interacted with, a close friend, or if you subscribed to their Live videos.

With this change, you are more likely to catch Facebook Live streams as they’re still happening, which allows you to leave comments that the broadcaster will see.

Considering that Facebook Live and Periscope are inherently identical, this is how Facebook started to differentiate itself. While Live relies on the News Feed’s popularity to draw in viewers, Twitter is focused on getting people in during the first few seconds of a broadcast, hence the notifications.
Image Source: Medium

About Sergio Wallache

The young-turk of the team, he is responsible for reporting all the rumors and leaks related to gadgets and software. Other than collecting valuable information on trending rumors, he also likes to write about social media and IT security.

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