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How Facebook decides what’s trending

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New York: Ever wondered how Facebook determines what you see in your news feed every time you log in? The social networking site has actually devised different algorithms for it.

20-1437396013-facebook-25Apart from things like where you live and the pages you follow, it primarily looks for two broader signals — Topics that are being mentioned a lot and topics that suddenly seen an increase in mentions, Re/Code reported.

For example, singer Justin Bieber is mentioned often on Facebook. So the total volume of mentions is always high and is not a good indicator of whether or not he is part of a trending topic.

So, Facebook would look for a hike in mentions relative to the normal prattle around Bieber.

“This means that things that trend are not just the most highly mentioned people or topics, they have to be tied to some kind of relevant event,” the report said.

Once a topic is identified as trending, it is approved by a human controller, who also writes a short description for the story.

These people don’t get to pick what Facebook adds to the trending section.

“That’s done automatically by the algorithm. They just get to pick the headline,” the report added.

(IANS)

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Facebook Asks Political Ad Buyers In UK To Reveal Their Identity

While the vast majority of ads on Facebook are run by legitimate organizations, we know that there are bad actors that try to misuse our platform,” Facebook said in a statement.

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A protester wearing a mask with the face of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is flanked by two fellow activists wearing angry face emoji masks, during a protest against Facebook policies, in London, Britain (From archives) VOA

Facebook says that anyone who takes out a British political ad on the social media platform will now be forced to reveal their identity, in a bid to increase transparency and curb misinformation.

The company said Tuesday that it will also require disclaimers for any British political advertisements. All the data on the ad buyers will be archived for seven years in a publicly accessible database.

Facebook, India, Fake News
CEO Mark Zuckerberg delivers the keynote address at a Facebook developers conference in San Jose, California. VOA

Facebook is already applying a similar system in the United States, which is holding midterm elections this year.

British lawmakers have called for greater oversight of social media companies and election campaigns to protect democracy in the digital age.

A House of Commons report this year said democracy is facing a crisis because data analysis and social media allow campaigns to target voters with messages of hate without their consent.

Facebook, India, Fake News
This photo shows the app icon on a smartphone in New York. VOA

“While the vast majority of ads on Facebook are run by legitimate organizations, we know that there are bad actors that try to misuse our platform,” Facebook said in a statement. “By having people verify who they are, we believe it will help prevent abuse.”

Also Read: Google Pixel Cameras Coming With External Microphones Support

Facebook said it’s up against “smart and well-funded adversaries who change their tactics as we spot abuse,” but it believes that increased transparency is good for democracy and the electoral process. (VOA)

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