New world. Facebook implements new settings to better control content


The Facebook application (illustration image)
The Facebook application (illustrative image) (ULI DECK / DPA)

With its 2.6 billion users worldwide, including 40 million in France, Facebook has an impact and a social responsibility. Its famous recommendation algorithm would promote the spread of hateful content and disinformation. The social network wants to allow its members to regain, at least in part, control.

Among the new functions that have just been announced, there is the possibility of configuring your news feed, that is to say the messages published by your “friends”, so that they are displayed in a chronological, with the most recent first. So far, it’s the famous recommendation algorithm that decides to show you what it wants based on what it knows about your interests.

This new function is first deployed on Android and will then arrive on iPhone. Another new function: the possibility to bookmark pages or profiles or, on the contrary, to hide certain pages. Finally, it will be possible to choose more precisely who can see content that is shared on Facebook.

These new functions can be compared to a lengthy blog post published on April 1 by Nick Clegg, vice president of global affairs at Facebook, titled “You and the Algorithm: Two people dance the tango.” The author defends Facebook’s oft-criticized algorithm and challenges social media to be responsible for polarizing society. Nick Clegg refers users to their responsibilities. “Your news feed is strongly influenced by your choices and actions “, he writes. In other words, the content that we consult or that welove shape the similar content offered to us. According to him, the algorithm is just going with the flow.

Nick Clegg, who is also a former UK Deputy Prime Minister, puts this in a more global perspective. “Personalization is at the heart of the evolution of the Internet over the past two decades “, he explains. And we are witnessing a “democratization (…) history of speech “. We will not go back, says in substance Nick Clegg, who also calls for “democratically elected institutions “ for “establish new rules “.


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