Facebook to Kill Clickbaity Headlines in its News Feed

Tired of those click-bait headlines on your Facebook News Feed? Looks like that Facebook is too. The company is rolling out a new anti-clickbait algorithm which will make all those type of headlines disappear from your News Feed.

What Facebook did was that they manually categorized tens of thousands of headlines by considering two points:

  • (1) is the headline withholding information required to understand the content of the article?
  • (2) does the headline exaggerates the article to create misleading expectations for the reader?

So, rather than assigning “clickbait” or “not clickbait” to the headlines, it gives it a score of how much clickbait-y it is. The algorithm primarily looks for phrases often used in clickbait headlines but not in legitimate headlines, similar to email spam filters.

The system then identifies which posts are clickbaits and from which page they came from. If the system sees that most of the titles shared a particular page are clickbaits, then it will make all the links and posts shared by page less visible.

If you post 50 times a day and post one piece of  clickbait, this shouldn’t affect you. If you’re a spammer and post clickbait all day, this should affect you a lot

– Adam Mosseri, Facebook’s VP of Product Management

However, if the page improves itself and doesn’t post clickbait titles, then it won’t be affected by this algorithm and its view count will not go down. It is interesting to note that the algorithm not only catch offenders on the Facebook Page level but also on the web domain level so spammers can’t build a page and then launch websites with different URLs to avoid being detected.

If these anti-clickbait efforts actually work then it would boost traffic for actual legitimate publishers as users may become more confident that links they see are worth a click.

You can view the full press release by Facebook here.

What Pakistani pages on Facebook do you know of use clickbait? Let us know in the comments below!

  • All Pakistani Newspaper sites force you to click the link to see the news. They don’t even post headline of the news, just half of it. Pathetic way to get visitors. Should be stopped it.

  • “Tired of those click-bait headlines on your Facebook News Feed?”
    Oh, look who’s talking! :p

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