Facebook has said it’s no longer put up with click bait headlines, announcing plans to demote posts that try to solicit likes and comments in sensational ways in people’s newsfeeds.
The social media giant is referring to posts that call on other users to like, comment or share certain posts by using enticing offers or statements. Many brands use such tactics to generate more responses to their posts in the hope of going viral. Examples include saying “SHARE this post with 20 friends to win a prize”.
“We will begin implementing stricter demotions for Pages that systematically and repeatedly use engagement bait to artificially gain reach in News Feed,” Henry Silverman, operations integrity specialist at Facebook, wrote in a blog post.
Facebook added that posts asking for help, advice and recommendations will not face any penalty.
The company plans to identify offending posts by using new machine learning technology, which is a subset of artificial intelligence. Pages or users that repeatedly offend with such posts will face further penalties that will see their posts demoted even further.
Facebook says it would like to see more posts with “authentic engagement” instead of clickbait. The idea is to “reduce the spread of content that is spammy, sensational or misleading”, the company said.
The announcement comes after Facebook has received heavy criticism for allegedly spreading fake news during the 2016 U.S. Presidential elections.