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Historically, any major modification Facebook has made to its News Feed has been met with backlash; when you have over 1.2 billion users, you’re bound to break a few eggs. This could be one of the reasons why the social network chose to scale back the major redesign it announced last March. Rather than institute sweeping changes to the way people interact with the platform, this time around it seems the company has opted for light adjustments — slightly larger image prominence, increased font options, bigger buttons on the right-hand rail. And according to a Facebook spokesperson, the updates will have no impact on current methods of advertising.
Facebook said that it is updating the News Feed to create more consistency in the experience between desktop and mobile. According to a recent blog post:
You may recall that last year we experimented with a complete redesign of News Feed for desktop and mobile. People who tested it told us that they liked the bigger photos and images, but found it more difficult to navigate Facebook overall. The updated design has the best of both worlds: it keeps the layout and navigation people liked, but offers bigger images and photos, as well as a new font. The current design on mobile remains the same.
This surprisingly scaled back platform update is not all that surprising when you consider the facts. Last year, this was Zuckerberg’s explanation of his intentions: “What we are trying to give everyone is a copy of the best personalized newspaper in the world.” Sounds an awful lot like Facebook Paper.
There’s always been a slight tug-of-war between Zuckerberg’s vision and what Facebook users want, but now that the content- and quality-focused Facebook Paper is in place, we could be getting the best of both worlds. The Facebook News Feed redesign takes user feedback (and sensitivity to change) into account, and happy users can only mean good things for advertisers in the long run.