Facebook is updating its News Feed algorithm to put a greater focus on the content people react to, rather than like.
A year ago, Facebook launched its Reactions feature, which enables users to respond to posts using small icons that represent different feelings.
The feature was a step up from the social network’s original Like tool (which is still available on the platform), and so far people have left a whopping 300bn reactions on the social network.
And it has now been announced that Facebook will be using Reactions to rank the content users see on their News Feeds – the company placing a greater emphasis on the posts that people react to, rather than the ones they like.
However, the social network is not taking into account the type of reactions a person leaves (e.g. “love”, “wow”, “sad”, “angry” etc).
Facebook said: “Over the past year we’ve found that if people leave a Reaction on a post, it is an even stronger signal that they’d want to see that type of post than if they left a Like on the post.
“So we are updating News Feed to weigh reactions a little more than Likes when taking into account how relevant the story is to each person.”
The reason for this change is because leaving a reaction is indicative of higher levels of engagement, as it takes people longer to choose a reaction than like a post.
Facebook has said that “love” is by far the most popular emotion on the platform, accounting for more than half of all reactions posted last year.
Christmas Day 2016 saw the most reactions across a 24 hour period, with “love” the most popular emotion.
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