To No One's Surprise, People Don't Like When Facebook Apps Spam Your News Feed

Now, Facebook is going to start limiting what kinds of actions apps can publish on your behalf.

Facebook is cutting down on wall spam from certain Open Graph apps to help improve the quality of user experiences. Which is another way of saying that, to no one's surprise, people don't like when Facebook apps are murky about what information they're going to share with your friends, and when.

"When apps automatically publish stories on a person’s behalf in a way that is unexpected, such as when they browse an online store, it can surprise and confuse people," Facebook product engineer Henry Zhang wrote in a blog post.

In other words, if Facebook is considered a platform for storytelling, then people want to write their own histories.

At the beginning of this year, Facebook said it would allow Open Graph app developers to create "Actions," which effectively allowed those apps to share users' data (with permission) on Facebook, so you and your friends could see which songs you listened to on Spotify, or how many miles you ran and logged on Runkeeper.

But don't worry about your News Feed and ticker getting too sparse—Facebook's going to make up for that freed-up real estate by throwing more image- and location-based stories into the fold, where they can generate 50 times the number of Likes that other stories receive.

[Image: Flickr user janetgalore]

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  • Abdallah Al-Hakim

    One of the problems with social media is the high noise to signal ratio. This will not be helped if the user has no control over what their stream will display. I get my news from different sources such as Prismatic which delivers good stories to my stream AND Engagio (www.engag.io) which delivers the conversations that my friends are engaged with