Two posts well worth reading about the Facebook news feed algorithm

I Liked Everything I Saw on Facebook for Two Days. Here’s What It Did to Me” – Mat Honan

For Wired, Mat Honan ‘liked’ literally everything Facebook threw at him, to see what happened. He could only bear it for 48 hours:

My News Feed took on an entirely new character in a surprisingly short amount of time. After checking in and liking a bunch of stuff over the course of an hour, there were no human beings in my feed anymore. It became about brands and messaging, rather than humans with messages.

Worth noting that every single marketeer complaining about their lack of organic reach is asking for basically that – they are looking down the wrong end of the telescope.

Read the full article.

Tricking Facebook’s Algorithm” – Caleb Garling

Caleb Garling wrote in the Atlantic about “tricking” the Facebook algorithm.

Part of the impetus was that Facebook had frustrated me. That morning I’d posted a story I’d written about the hunt for electric bacteria that might someday power remote sensors. After a few hours, the story had garnered just one like. I surmised that Facebook had decided that, for whatever reason, what I’d submitted to the blue ether wasn’t what people wanted, and kept it hidden. A little grumpy at the idea, I wanted to see if I could trick Facebook into believing I’d had one of those big life updates that always hang out at the top of the feed.

His article comes to the right conclusion about what he actually did. Annoyed that something boring he wrote got no traction on Facebook, he instead crafted something funny that people would want to interact with – and the algorithm worked perfectly.

Read the full article.