Facebook’s general counsel Colin Stretch announced on Monday that it is changing the policies for ‘trending topics’ section. The move came after a news report alleged that the social media powerhouse “suppresses the conservative’ news”. Facebook said that it ran an internal probe, which showed “no evidence of political bias”.
However, the company said in a blog post that is implementing several changes in the way it selects the trending topics such as relying on certain news sites to nominate newsworthy topics for trending section. It will also eliminate the list of “top ten approved websites” and incorporate guidelines and training to help editors pick the trending topics.
A few weeks back, a former Facebook contractor alleged that the social media giant deliberately downplays conservative news subjects. Technology website Gizmodo reported the allegations without naming the criticizer. This report led Republican Sen. John Thune to write a letter to the company seeking an explanation about how it selects the trending topics.
Facebook posted a lengthy blog explaining the way it selects the trending topics and said that it was unable to substantiate any, levied allegations of politically suppressing particular subjects or sources. However, it did not rule out human error in selecting topics.