In 2011, frictionless sharing was hailed by some as the future for social networks. Facebook launched a feature in which apps like Spotify and Netflix and news organizations like The Guardian could post a user’s activity to their wall, without asking for permission every time. While some criticized the move, others saw potential:
“And soon, the idea that apps are sharing a continuous stream of our activity will seem just as commonplace and uncontroversial as the original news feed.”
But with increasing comptetion in the newsfeed, the feature hasn’t paid off and now Facebook has effectively pulled the plug on automatically shared content. Stories shared via seamless sharing will still be posted to Facebook, but have been downgraded to second tier content, thereby making it more or less invisible to users.
Facebook says that “We’ve found that stories people choose to explicitly share from third party apps are typically more interesting and get more engagement in News Feed than stories shared from third party apps without explicit action.”
This means that stories that users share automatically from third party apps will receive a lower ranking in the news feed.
“In the coming months, we will continue to prioritize explicitly shared stories from apps in News Feed over implicitly shared stories. This means people will see fewer implicit stories from third party apps in the future.”
The average Facebook user has around 1,500 stories per day that potentially could appear in the news feed. Content shared via frictionless sharing isn’t engaging enough and now Facebook is acting to remove a lot of that content, possibly pushing more engaging stories to users.
Via Inside Facebook.