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Facebook is rolling out three updates to its News Feed that, combined, could make it easier to see more of what your friends post and less of what they simply like.

The News Feed algorithm changes, announced today on Facebook’s news blog, seek to address what the company calls News Feed “balance,” or the “right mix of updates from friends and public figures, publishers, businesses and community organizations you are connected to.”


Perhaps most significant, Facebook now is giving higher News Feed priority to “content posted directly by the friends you care about, such as photos, videos, status updates or links.” The purpose, Product Manager Max Eulenstein and User Experience Researcher Lauren Scissors write, is to deal with feedback they’ve received “that people are worried about missing important updates from the friends they care about.”

Further down in (or removed entirely from) the News Feed will be stories that one’s friends simply “like” or comment on.

Finally, the rule that prevents Facebook from displaying multiple posts in a row from the same source is being relaxed to make it easier on people “who don’t have a lot of content available to see.”

The apparent upshot is that companies, public figures and organizations with their own pages may suffer somewhat, and “post reach and referral traffic could potentially decline.” But the News Feed changes could help deal with many months of user frustration over the ability to easily see status updates posted by friends.

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