“At its best, Facebook has always been about personal connections. By focusing on bringing people closer together — whether it’s with family and friends or around important moments in the world — we can help make sure that Facebook is time well spent”, said Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg in a recent post.
With Facebook being a major part of our life, it has received both appraisal and criticism for its impact, but the latter has proved to be the major trend in the past few years. In an effort to address criticism from users and others about the quality of the content shared and its effect on society, Facebook will favour posts, photos shared and discussed by friends and relatives over those posted by news organizations and businesses.
“I was a frequent user of Facebook but felt more at home with other social networking platforms and unrelated posts in my feed played a major part in me leaving Facebook. I never saw a few updates from some of my friends. Now I feel like I can be more active on Facebook”, says Francis Johnson, a user from Tambaram.
Shimrata Sharma, who holds a similar opinion, said, “I think it is really good that Facebook is going back to its roots doing what it does best - connect people. At one point, my feed looked like a classified page of a newspaper”.
Digital marketing experts in the city were on the same page regarding the move. When asked about the new policy, Suneil Chawla, cofounder of Social Beat Digital Marketing tells DC, “The new update continues Facebook’s approach over the last few years, with a pay-to-play model. So, organic or unpaid reach will drop and brands will need to advertise to be found by their target customers and the cost of acquiring a customer may marginally go up.
“As a Facebook user I believe it is a great move as we can see more content from friends and family. As a brand, anything good for the user, can’t be that bad for a meaningful brand”, he adds.
Dharaneetharan.G.D, director of Social Eagle, a social media marketing agency says, in 2016, free flowing content turned into regulated content when a new algorithm was introduced, where not every follower of a page gets the update unless he or she marks the page as “see first”. He feels that the new policy will result in decrease of ads where both small and big businesses will have an initial setback.
When asked about any change in the market, he said, the celebrities and “influencers” will be presented with a chance to earn more. In a particular field, these “influencers” can push product. The only setback here would be a little increase in money spent in promotion. The overall winner here is the user, as Facebook was started for interaction rather than advertisement.