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Facebook cracks down on third-party app spam in News Feed

Will no longer share everything you do
Wed May 28 2014, 10:37

SOCIAL NETWORK Facebook is looking to reduce the amount of spam cluttering up your timeline, having announced plans to crack down on apps that post without user permission.

Facebook said on Wednesday that in a move to curb spam, it will ensure that that third-party apps will post fewer stories on users' behalfs, instead promising to prioritise content that its users choose to share. This means that apps such as Instagram and Spotify will no longer tell the world that you've liked an image, nor that you're listening to One Direction.

Facebook said on Tuesday, "We've found that stories people choose to explicitly share from third party apps are typically more interesting and get more engagement in News Feed than stories shared from third party apps without explicit action. We've also heard that people often feel surprised or confused by stories that are shared without taking an explicit action.

"In the coming months, we will continue to prioritise explicitly shared stories from apps in News Feed over implicitly shared stories."

However, Facebook doesn't want to alienate third-party app developers altogether, and Facebook product manager Peter Yang outlined some alternative methods that developers can use to get content into the News Feed.

For example, users can choose to make pieces of content "explicit" during the Open Graph submission process to give users a choice whether to share content, or developers can choose to use Facebook's "Send to Mobile" feature.

"Send to Mobile gives people a shortcut to install your mobile app when they log in with Facebook to your website. For example, when people log in with Facebook to Rdio on the web, Send to Mobile will display a notification in a person's Facebook mobile app to download and install Rdio," Yang explained.

It seems Facebook is starting to improve its ideas regarding user privacy, having just last week announced that new users will no longer share posts with "everyone" by default.

However, that was announced in the same week that Facebook also revealed that it will soon be able to know what you're listing to. µ


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