I broke Facebook

I’m sitting on a train, on my way to Whistler, and I decide to check Facebook. I’m hoping to see what my friends did last night, or what their plans are for Thanksgiving, but this is what I see:

I don’t see almost any personal posts, or pictures that help me connect with my friends, with the people I love. Isn’t that Facebook’s mission? Instead, I get irrelevant stories.

I’m not interested in the NBA, and the person who shared an NBA’s photo is not my friend, so the probability of me being interested in a friend’s reply to a comment on that post is virtually zero.

Last year, I talked about how Facebook was filled with posts from other websites that I wasn’t interested in, and how I tried to fix it. I soon realized that only a handful of my friends post personal stuff, so I apparently left Facebook’s algorithm struggling to “fill” my News Feed.

A friend replied to a comment on a post from an unknown person, a friend reacted to a post from an unknown person, a friend likes some brand, a friend and an unknown person are now friends… but the problem is that I don’t care about any of that.

Facebook probably has a relevance metric for each post, but their bar is so low that they are showing me stories with 3 degrees of separation. Did I lower that bar by hiding so many external sites? Perhaps, but the biggest problem for Facebook is that people are posting less personal content.

Maybe that’s OK for most people, but I miss the old Facebook, where I could see what was going on in my friends’ personal lives and stay in touch with them.

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