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What Does A Facebook ‘Like’ Actually Mean?

Serendipit takes a look at a recent experiment where Mat Honan, from Wired.com ‘liked’ everything on his Facebook newsfeed

Facebook activated its ‘like’ feature in February of 2009 and since then, the platform has never been the same. This button allows users to easily express how they feel about a fellow users’ post, but more importantly, it gives Facebook insight into what topics fans are interested in. Facebook uses algorithms to decide what shows up in your feed, dependent on what you like. Mat Honan, from Wired.com, describes your news feed as a “highly curated presentation, delivered to you by a complicated formula.”

So what happens if you ‘like’ everything on your page? Mat Honan did that, and his findings were pretty much expected. He went through for 48 hours and ‘liked’ every single post that came across his feed, even posts that he really didn’t like. Everything from Amazon, to what his friends were posting, to posts regarding the Kennedy family. He quickly found that all of the real human beings disappeared from his feed, and he was left with only branded content.

Mat’s Facebook experiment solidified the fact that Facebook’s algorithm is prominent, and looks at all of your activity. The more brands and posts that you like, the more those categories will show up in your feed. The lesson of this experiment is to be careful what you ‘like’.

What do you think about Facebook’s algorithms? Tweet us @serendipit or comment below!

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