Facebook said on Friday that it planned to prioritize high-quality news on the social network by allowing its users to rank news sources they see as the most credible and trustworthy.
The move comes after the company endured harsh criticism for allowing disinformation to spread on its social network and for favoring liberal outlets over conservative ones. In a blog post accompanying the announcement, chief executive Mark Zuckerberg wrote Facebook is not “comfortable” deciding which news sources are the most trustworthy in a “world with so much division.” “We decided that having the community determine which sources are broadly trusted would be most objective,” he wrote.
Publications trusted by a broad cross-section of Facebook users will get priority over those that have low trust ratings. The change—which will rely on surveys of Facebook users—will roll out Monday.
The change, which the company plans to roll out internationally, came a week after Zuckerberg said Facebook will show fewer unpaid posts from publishers and brands on the social network as part of a year-long, company-wide push to foster more interactions between friends and family across Facebook’s products. Moving forward, Facebook expects news to make up about 4 percent of the news feed, down from 5 percent today.
Facebook users also will begin to see more content from local news sources, a change the company attributed to a growing desire among its user base for information at the regional level.