Facebook updates trending feature after claims of bias

MENLO PARK, Calif., Facebook updated its trending feature, it announced Friday, after Republicans claimed the social media powerhouse was showing bias in its trending descriptions.


Earlier this year Facebook was accused of showing liberal favoritism in its trending topics featured on the upper right corner of a user’s homepage.

Facebook launched an investigation and said it found no truth to the claims, but overhauled the feature to allow “our team to make fewer individual decisions about topics.”

The old system required Facebook employees to write a short description about each trending topic, while the new feature relies on a combination of automation and human input.

“Our goal is to enable Trending for as many people as possible, which would be hard to do if we relied solely on summarizing topics by hand,” the company said in a statement. “A more algorithmically driven process allows us to scale Trending to cover more topics and make it available to more people globally over time.

This is something we always hoped to do but we are making these changes sooner given the feedback we got from the Facebook community earlier this year.”