"Facebook is making the service more social and less media, and that's likely a positive for the vast majority of users", Weiser said. Over the next few weeks, users will begin seeing fewer viral videos and news articles posted by media companies.
"By making these changes, I expect the time people spend on Facebook and some measures of engagement will go down", Zuckerberg wrote. "As we take this journey together and focus on content that our community can connect around, we'll work on providing you and your clients with best practices, insights, and tools to help them understand and create content that promotes these meaningful interactions on Facebook".
Although the company has made similar announcements in the past about, Zuckerberg described this change as a meaningful shift in. He vowed last week to "fix" the social network after a year that saw Facebook come under sharp criticism for contributing to a climate of extreme political polarization, the distribution of fake news and escalating privacy concerns. If a relative or friend posts a link with an inaccurate news article that is widely commented on, that post will still be prominently displayed. Zuckerberg acknowledged that he expects this will mean people spend less time on Facebook, but he hopes the time they do spend "will be more valuable".
The Silicon Valley company constantly experiments with what shows up in the News Feed and in the past has also said it would prioritize posts from users' friends and family.
Will publishers pay to get their posts in front of a larger Facebook audience?
In September, the latest month for which figures are available, Facebook's total number of users was up 16 per cent over a year earlier to 2.07 billion.
"As we roll this out, you'll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media", Zuckerberg said in a post on his Facebook page.
If Facebook doesn't want a certain conservative or liberal publisher in the feed or decides a certain local news publisher shouldn't be there either, that publisher's social media reach will die, causing it significant economic harm.
Facebook's popularity and user growth have skyrocketed since its founding in 2004, when it was a sort of online scrapbook and bulletin board for college students.
"In an odd way we will look back and think this was a pretty good thing for the news industry", he said.
The change to the way Facebook ranks posts will put more weight on social interactions and relationships, according to News Feed product manager John Hegeman.
We feel a responsibility to make sure our services aren't just fun to use, but also good for people's well-being.
That said, company says this is how people make friends and interact with each other offline. A long comment on a family member's photo, for instance, might be highlighted in the News Feed above a video with fewer comments or fewer interactions between people. Zuckerberg already signaled this would happen late previous year, when he said the company's planned investments in preventing abuse would hurt profitability.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg wants you to remember a time when you curated your list of favourite movies, showed off your new pair of shoes, shared some good news, and didn't see using Facebook as a pseudo-masochistic act of poor impulse control.
"We've told our clients we anticipate a dip", said Casey Whittington at communications firm The Whittington Group, "but we are going to work really hard to make sure that's a very temporary step".
"And the public content you see more will be held to the same standard - it should encourage meaningful interactions between people". And it's like June 2016, when Facebook again said it would push posts from friends higher up in the feed, because "Facebook was built on the idea of connecting people with their friends and family". It has been going on for two years.
Facebook said it quickly shut that capability down.
"It's important to me that when Max and August grow up that they feel like what their father built was good for the world", Zuckerberg said.