In a surprising move, Facebook is removing the trending news topics in the sidebar of their site. Today, if you log in on a desktop you will see this message:
Facebook Announces They Are Removing Trending Soon to Make Way for Future News Experiences
Maybe it’s not surprising to many, but this is actually something I used a lot. Although, they essentially said they are removing it because no one is using it. I think when they say no one is using it, they mean no one is clicking through, which means less revenue for them! I liked scanning the topics but I never really clicked through, I just got a brief overview, then left. With their revenue model, there is no value here, which is why they will be discontinuing the feature. It was also rarely used on mobile, so it makes sense to change things up. They are working on a news notification feature and a top news page dedicated to trending stories. Here is the message from their site:
Removing Trending From Facebook
June 1, 2018
We’re removing Trending soon to make way for future news experiences on Facebook. We introduced Trending in 2014 as a way to help people discover news topics that were popular across the Facebook community. However, it was only available in five countries and accounted for less than 1.5% of clicks to news publishers on average. From research we found that over time people found the product to be less and less useful. We will remove Trending from Facebook next week and we will also remove products and third-party partner integrations that rely on the Trends API.
We’ve seen that the way people consume news on Facebook is changing to be primarily on mobile and increasingly through news video. So we’re exploring new ways to help people stay informed about timely, breaking news that matters to them, while making sure the news they see on Facebook is from trustworthy and quality sources. For example:
- Breaking News Label: A test we’re running with 80 publishers across North America, South America, Europe, India and Australia lets publishers put a “breaking news” indicator on their posts in News Feed. We’re also testing breaking news notifications.
- Today In: We’re testing a dedicated section on Facebook called Today In that connects people to the latest breaking and important news from local publishers in their city, as well as updates from local officials and organizations.
- News Video in Watch: We will soon have a dedicated section on Facebook Watch in the US where people can view live coverage, daily news briefings and weekly deep dives that are exclusive to Watch.
What do you think? Did you use it?