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Facebook will suggest more articles for you to read in News Feed to help fight its ‘filter bubble’

Facebook says it wants to create a more “informed community.”

How The UK Press Reacted To Donald Trump's Inauguration As US President Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images

Many people believe that Facebook has a “filter bubble” problem — that is, you often see posts and news stories that align with your own personal beliefs and values.

Facebook’s News Feed is personalized, so it’s easy to avoid things you don’t want to see. Some believe it’s to blame for the spread of fake news on Facebook leading up to last year’s U.S. presidential election.

Facebook wants to fix that, or at the very least offer users more options when it comes to reading the news.

Beginning Tuesday, Facebook will start adding “related” articles from different publications underneath a news post about a trending topic in your News Feed.

For example: You may see a post about Syria from the New York Times in your feed, but Facebook might also add similar stories from the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post and Fox News directly below it. Facebook already does this, but only after you’ve read the original story, in this scenario, from the New York Times. Now it will do so from the get-go.

Facebook says the goal of the update is to help “support an informed community,” which is another way of saying it wants to offer users alternative news sources. “[The update] should provide people easier access to additional perspectives and information, including articles by third-party fact-checkers,” Facebook wrote in a blog post.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has long argued that Facebook’s “filter bubble” is not an actual issue. Tuesday’s update feels like Facebook is, at the very least, acknowledging one might exist.

It’s tough to tell if publishers will love the change. The New York Times might not like the idea of having competitor stories appearing right below its own, though publishers probably won’t complain when they are included in a group of “related” articles.

Facebook says it doesn’t “anticipate Pages will see significant changes in reach” as part of the move, which Facebook is billing as a “test.”

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