Facebook won't tell you what's trending anymore

  • The social media site is removing the feature, which ranked news topics and links based on popularity, starting next week.
  • It occasionally caused headaches for the site as controversial links or false headlines racked up shares and gamed their way onto the list.
  • "The way people consume news on Facebook is changing to be primarily on mobile and increasingly through news video," Alex Hardiman, the company's head of news products, said in a blog post.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks at the company's 2017 F8 developer conference in San Jose, Calif.
Source: Facebook
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks at the company's 2017 F8 developer conference in San Jose, Calif.

Facebook won't tell you what's trending anymore.

The social media site is removing the feature, which ranked news topics and links based on popularity, starting next week.

"We found that over time people found the product to be less and less useful," Alex Hardiman, the company's head of news products, said in a blog post. "The way people consume news on Facebook is changing to be primarily on mobile and increasingly through news video."

Trending launched in 2014, but was only available in a handful of countries and accounted for less than 1.5 percent of clicks to news publishers, Hardiman said.

It also occasionally caused headaches for the site as controversial links or false headlines racked up shares and gamed their way onto the list. Facebook for years denied acting as a media company with influence over content.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg only recently softened his stance on how much the site has responsibility for what's shared.

"We're exploring new ways to help people stay informed about timely, breaking news that matters to them, while making sure the news they see on Facebook is from trustworthy and quality sources," Hardiman said.

Facebook has previously partnered with local and metropolitan news organization to help build subscriber bases. It's also introduced contextual information and breaking news label for publisher content.

The company is expected to announce partnerships with CNN and Fox News on dedicated news shows for its Watch video platform, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday. CNBC did not independently confirm that report with Facebook.