Facebook users can now get a better understanding of why certain posts appear in their news feed with Facebook's newly released feature called "Why am I seeing this post?"
In addition, the tool will also give users more control over what they see in their timeline and manage the posts they interact with on the site. According to Facebook, this is the first time it has built information on how News Feed ranking works directly into the Facebook app. It also notes that this feature is just one part of its efforts to be more transparent with users about how algorithms work to target them.
Why Am I Seeing This Post?
To access the new tool, simply click or tap the drop-down menu on the right hand corner of any post, be it from friends, pages, or groups. From there, the users will be able to view information at a glance on why they're seeing certain content — perhaps because they're part of a group, they follow this page, and so on. They can opt to see more or less of the content moving forward, as well.
Users will also get shortcuts to controls to help them better personalize their News Feed, including "See First," "Unfollow," "News Feed Preferences," and "Privacy Shortcuts."
People want more transparency on Facebook's News Feed algorithms, Facebook discovered during its research for the new feature. They also want more control, which is why the company is rolling out the aforementioned tools, making data personalization much easier and tailored to their own interests.
Why Am I Seeing This Ad?
But why stop there? Facebook is also updating its "Why am I seeing this ad?" feature to make it even more transparent. Aside from showing demographics and interests that may have caused the ad to appear on a user's News Feed, Facebook will now let people know when information on an advertiser's list matches their profile.
More importantly, Facebook will also let users know if an advertiser logs their private information onto its database, such as emails and phone numbers. If an advertiser worked with a marketing firm to target a particular user with ads, Facebook will inform that person, as well.
Facebook says these updates aim to give people more context and control across the site, adding that the company will continue to take feedback into account and evolve these tools moving forward.