Unless you’re a teenager, most people find it hard to keep up with social media. The newest app is always around the corner, the ideal length of posts keeps getting smaller (while ironically, short-form platforms such as Twitter allow us to write more and more), and the ever elusive algorithms change what is seen and what isn’t.
In the wake of the US election Russia enquiry, Facebook announced it is re-jigging how it prioritises what people see in their news feeds to “prioritise posts that spark conversation and meaningful interactions between people.”¹
This means that Facebook users will see more posts from their friends and families and less from businesses and publishers. It’s a move that will please some, particularly those who didn’t like the move away from friends to real news (or fake news, as the case may be) and disappoint others (who are already tired of seeing food-posts from ‘friends’ they haven’t talked to in 30 years).
It’s also a reminder that in a digital world, where everything can change on the drop of a line of code, it actually often does.
Change though, is inevitable, as the top social trends for this year in the below infographic show us. Augmented reality and chatbots continue to give us new options for interaction and stories will entertain us across multiple channels.
Hopefully most of the change is pushing us in the right direction. As Mark Zuckerberg elaborated on in his announcement around news feed changes – he expects people will use Facebook less, but that when they do it will be more meaningful and, he hopes, will improve our wellbeing and happiness.
It’s a nice thought. At least until the next change.