Facebook has their own ideas about what we want, and what they want to give us. They feel that there is an advantage to their algorithms determining what we see, and when we see it. They offer two choices for your News Feed: Top Stories, or Most Recent. However Most Recent is not really the most recent posts, its the most popular or the most recently posted, commented, or liked posts. For some time Facebook has periodically reset your News Feed back to Top Stories, even when you consistently set it to Most Recent. And now, it appears that every time you log in Facebook is resetting your Feed to Top Stories. And Facebook doesn’t really show you all the posts from all your friends. They limit the number of posts you see from even your closest friends, and cut the number of items you see from those you interact with less frequently to a tiny trickle.
My challenge to Facebook is this: Offer people a mode that covers what THEY think they want. Yes, include your ads and featured stories and other commercial interventions. But offer a mode where the rest of one’s feed is actually a real time list of ALL the posts, from ALL our friends, in reverse chronological order (newest to oldest), so we can actually be sure to see everything that has been posted in the last hour, or if we take the time, since we last checked our feed.
Facebook’s current spoon-feeding leaves us not believing them, never trusting that we have seen what we went there to see. I don’t care that a cute kitten video a friend posted has had a massive number of likes and reposts. I saw that video yesterday, when it was posted. A big public event of interest to me and many of my friends is currently taking place. I want to see their comments on that, unfiltered, and not watered down with old news and popular items.
What does Facebook have to lose? Does manipulating what we see give them some real advantage? As long as their advertising is in place, why not let us see what we want, when we want, from who we want? And, if they must, reset the mode to Top Stories, once a week at most, to assure that the masses are getting what Facebook whats to feed them, while allowing those of us with a different view, to be more satisfied with using Facebook.
C. David Tobie