Facebook is removing the the trending news feature next week

Facebook via AP

Facebook Is Killing Off Its Trending News Section

"And we're investing in ways to better draw attention to breaking news when it matters most".

The California-based social network is also testing a "Today" section dedicated to "breaking and important news" from local publishers, officials and organizations, according to Hardiman.

Facebook's head of news products, Alex Hardiman, wrote in the announcement that the company is now testing a breaking news label that would put the power of editorial decisions in the hands of news organizations. But at that time fake news was not a popular term and no foreign country had been accused of trying to influence the USA elections through social media, as Russian Federation would be.

Facebook is shutting down its ill-fated trending news section after four years, according to a company executive.

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"We are committed to ensuring the news that people see on Facebook is high quality", Hardiman said.

To that end, Facebook is testing several new features, including a breaking news label for news outlets, breaking news notifications, a Today In section and more news coverage in Facebook Watch.

"I consider us to be a technology company because the primary thing that we do is have engineers who write code and build product and services for other people", he told Congress.

"Breaking news has to look different than a recipe", Hardiman said. Facebook eventually fired the editors on the trending team, replacing them with an automated process.

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The contractor claimed Facebook downplayed conservative issues and promoted liberal causes. It's being tested out in 30 markets in the U.S. Hardiman says the goal is to help "elevate great local journalism". The Today In section, which is being piloted in 33 United States cities, is driving an average of 8 percent more traffic outbound from Facebook to the publishers themselves. However, the company declined to provide a list of publishers or details on the funding.

We'll see if doing away with the Trending section and delivering more meaningful news does anything to improve user trust in Facebook.

These new ways include a Breaking News label in the News Feed section for select publishers, a locally focused section that's being tested called Today In, and the addition of news video for US users of Facebook Watch.

Introduced in 2014, the section, available on desktop and mobile devices, was intended "to help people discover content that is both popular in the world and meaningful to them".

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