Facebook Rises on Major News Feed Expectations

  on March 07 2013 12:14 PM

Facebook (NASDAQ: FB [FREE Stock Trend Analysis]) is up more than one percent this morning on expectations that the company will announce a redesigned News Feed.

The social networking giant confirmed last week that it fully intends to unveil an updated News Feed today. Ever since then, tech bloggers have been speculating about what these updates might include.

"The real test of the new News Feed will not be the reactions tomorrow morning but how people, advertisers, developers and media companies are using the service in six months time," Shane Richmond, lead technology reporter for The Telegraph, wrote this morning. "Can Facebook finally figure out a way to please all of the people, all of the time?"

While Facebook is the easy industry leader with more than one billion users worldwide, the social network is often criticized for making frequent changes. Users are not appreciative of the learning curve involved in navigating Facebook each time it is updated, but most endure it to stay connected with their friends. They are less willing to forgive the constant adjustments that are made to Facebook's privacy settings, which have left many users feeling vulnerable and betrayed.

Less than one month ago the Los Angeles Times reported that Facebook had raised privacy issues when it announced that it will allow users to pay to promote their friends' posts. According to the report, "The promoted posts abide by privacy settings, but users have zero control over which posts friends promote. There is no way to opt out of it."

"Nothing is off limits to Facebook executives when it comes to turning friendships into an opportunity to make an extra buck," Jeffrey Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy, told the LA Times.

In a strange twist of irony, Randi Zuckerberg (the sister of Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg) complained last fall when a family photo leaked online after it was shared exclusively with friends on Facebook. It is not entirely clear how the photo leaked, but it appears to be related to loopholes in how images are shared -- and who they're shared with.

Facebook is unlikely to spend a great deal of time talking about privacy today. Instead, Mark Zuckerberg is likely to spend his time promoting the revised News Feed, along with photos of his famous dog.

Follow me @LouisBedigianBZ

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