FACT CHECK: Does a New Facebook Algorithm Only Show You 26 Friends?
I can see friendship between myself and a friend, but I can't see a friendship between two of my other friends. I know this used to be a feature on Faceb. A new Facebook algorithm only shows posts from about two dozen friends in your newsfeed. The following post is circulating among my friends on Facebook. (The spike at friends probably has to do with Facebook's friend Here's the breakdown according to reported relationship status as a function of age: . Facebook friends, with connections between them showing who's.
So we saw above how the typical number of friends a person has depends on age. But if we instead look at males and females as a function of age, there is a definite difference: Teenage boys tend to have more friends than teenage girls, perhaps because they are less selective in who they accept as friends.
But after the early 20s, the difference between genders rapidly dwindles. What effect does relationship status have? But for young people it does. Like here are comparisons of the median number of friends for countries around the world ones without enough data are left grayand for states in the US: There are some curious effects.
And perhaps there are lower friend counts in the western US because of lower population densities. What we see is pretty much what one would expect. One can ask where people move to and from. So to test this we might for example ask whether people with more friends tend to have friends who have more friends.
How does Facebook decide what to show in my news feed?
And the result is that, yes, on average people with more friends tend to have friends with more friends. Though we also notice that people with lots of friends tend to have friends with fewer friends than themselves.
And seeing this gives me an opportunity to discuss a subtlety I alluded to earlier. The very first plot in this post shows the distribution of the number of friends that our users have. But what about the number of friends that their friends have?
If we just average over all the friends of all our users, this is how what we get compares to the original distribution for our users themselves: In particular, if our users represent a uniform sample, any given friend will be sampled at a rate proportional to how many friends they have—with the result that people with more friends are sampled more often, so the average friend count goes up. But my year-old daughter Catherine was kind enough to let me show her network: No doubt each of these networks tells a different story.
But we can still generate overall statistics.
The price of love? Losing two of your closest friends | Science | The Guardian
Even at age 13, people typically seem to have about 3 clusters perhaps school, family and neighborhood. As they get older, go to different schools, take jobs, and so on, they accumulate another cluster or so. Right now the number saturates above about age 30, probably in large part just because of the limited time Facebook has been around.
How big are typical clusters? The largest one is usually around friends; the plot below shows the variation of this size with age: What about more detailed properties of networks?
The price of love? Losing two of your closest friends
Or a classification scheme like the one I made long ago for cellular automata? The first step is to find some kind of iconic summary of each network, which we can do for example by looking at the overall connectivity of clusters, ignoring their substructure. And now for example we can count the relative numbers of different types of structures that appear in all the Data Donor networks: And we can look at how the fractions of each of these structures vary with age: What do we learn?
The most common structures consist of either two or three major clusters, all of them connected. And one might think this would mean that there could never be a general theory of such things. Each of these topics is characterized by certain words that appear with high frequency: Not so secretly, actually.
There is controversy this week over the social network's research project manipulating nearlyusers' news feeds to understand whether it could affect their emotions. But Facebook has been much more open about its general practice of filtering the status updates and page posts that you see in your feed when logging on from your various devices. In fact, it argues that these filters are essential.
Why can't Facebook just show me an unfiltered feed? Because, it argues, the results would be overwhelming. In another blog post, by Facebook advertising executive Brian Boland in Junehe explained that for more intensive users, the risk of story overload is greater.
How many stories is Facebook filtering out, and how?
Data Science of the Facebook World—Stephen Wolfram Blog
Backstrom explained in August that Facebook's news feed algorithm boils down the 1, posts that could be shown a day in the average news feed into around that it "prioritises". How does this algorithm work?
Backstrom explained that factors include: You may have spotted the little downward arrow that appears next to stories in your Facebook news feed: Hiding posts or status updates on Facebook filters into its news feed algorithm.
It's a feature as useful for banishing people whose status updates don't interest you but who you don't want to unfriend, as it is for cleaning your feed of social quizzes, Candy Crush requests or nightly set lists from that band you liked a few years ago, but who've gone off the boil now. But these actions will also influence how many other people are shown those updates too, via the news feed algorithm.
Why is this emotion study controversial? Facebook has the right to filter your news feed, including for research: There is a debate about whether agreeing to these Ts and Cs counts as "informed consent" to take part in a research study — if not, the study has breached US ethical guidelines on human subjects research. There is also unease at the thought of Facebook deliberately manipulating our emotions, rather than simply using its filters for its traditional goal of making sure we see the stories that are most interesting to us.
One of the researchers, Adam Kramer, has posted a defence of the workclaiming Facebook had users' interests at heart: At the same time, we were concerned that exposure to friends' negativity might lead people to avoid visiting Facebook.