Facebook is constantly updating its News Feed algorithm, and has from time to time made some pretty significant changes. In its latest algorithm change, Facebook will be prioritising Reactions over Likes, when ranking stories on News Feed. In my opinion, Facebook knew what it was doing all along.
Moving from a system of “approval” on posts (Likes), to a more “emotional” indicator: Reactions. And from this, Facebook found that Reactions are a better indicator of whether someone was interested in a post and would be also interested in something similar. Better than Likes, that is.
The company says that it will “weigh” each reaction in the same way. However, it should also take into account the time a user spends on each post, and then “weigh” each reaction accordingly. Spending more time on a post, even if that means picking an appropriate reaction, shows that a person has “cared.” It would also be very interesting to know, how often users change their Reactions, within seconds, or over longer periods of time.
In the one year they’ve been around, Reactions have taken over the way we communicate. And despite all the negativity on our News Feed, you’ll be happy to know that “Love” accounts for half of the 300 billion times Reactions were used. Heartwarming! The most expressive countries are Mexico, Chile, Suriname, Greece, Paraguay, Costa Rica, Belize, the United States, Brazil, and Uruguay. Surprised?
In any case, now that you know that Facebook is taking your Reactions into account, to decide what to show you next, you can take measures. You could also try to game the system with this brilliant browser extension – Go Rando!