Facebook: 50 million fewer hours per day on the site

Mark Zuckerberg says that was intentional

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said people spent 50 million fewer hours per day on the site last quarter after the company made changes to display fewer viral videos.

“Our focus in 2018 is making sure Facebook isn’t just fun, but also good for people’s well-being and for society,” he said Wednesday in a Facebook post. “We’re doing this by encouraging meaningful connections between people rather than passive consumption of content. Already last quarter, we made changes to show fewer viral videos to make sure people’s time is well spent.”

“In total, we made changes that reduced time spent on Facebook by roughly 50 million hours every day,” he added.

Facebook also recently announced changes to the algorithm behind its News Feed to show users more “meaningful” posts from friends and family members, instead of posts from brands and publishers — an effort to make sure “the time we all spend on Facebook is time well spent.”

Facebook’s stock fell about 4% after Zuckerberg reported the drop in user engagement, even though the company’s fourth-quarter earnings surpassed expectations and daily active users rose to 1.4 billion, a 14% increase compared to this time last year.

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