Thursday 29 September 2016

Facebook reduces role of human editors in trending topics

Published 27/08/2016 | 01:11

Facebook editors will still vet the trending topics list, but will no longer write headlines or summaries
Facebook editors will still vet the trending topics list, but will no longer write headlines or summaries

Facebook is taking new steps to reduce the role of human judgment in its trending topics feature, which drew controversy earlier this year over claims the service was suppressing conservative views.

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Although it denied bias, Facebook has sought to reassure users that it is not showing favouritism when it highlights stories that are drawing comment on the social network.

Facebook says topics are selected by an algorithm that considers how often users post or share articles.

Editors will still vet the list, but the feature will no longer include headlines or summaries written by editors. Instead it will show a selection of user comments and an excerpt from a news article.

Earlier, Facebook said editors would stop relying on outside news outlets to help decide which topics should be highlighted.

AP

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