Amid lots of discussion about Facebook's Trending Topics widget, I sat down with the person who manages the News Feed to talk about how the company views its role in informing the world.
In five years, should we still expect human editors to be making news judgments on a feature like that?
We care about creating the product that people want. Whether or not we can do that entirely with automated systems, or it’s helpful to have people help, is actually just a detail. What’s more important is the product principle, which is that we want this to show you what you’re most interested in. We’re not interested in adding our point of view — we actually don’t think that works for a billion people. And some of the stuff that we’ve talked about publicly in response these questions about why we have a team is things like, if someone people are talking about Star Wars and some people are talking about "May the 4th be with you," it’s kind of a bug if the product treats those as separate stories. Or if a bunch of people start talking about lunch today, it’s kind of a bug if "lunch" showed up at the top. So that’s helpful to fix — but how we fix it is just a detail of how we get the product right.
I think the question is, what happens when everybody’s saying, "Obama was born in Kenya." Is there someone who comes in and says no, actually he was born in America?
I think you already see that happen on the platform today. It doesn’t have anything to do with us — people post a lot of this stuff and talk about it, and other people post different points of view. And the nitty-gritty of the details of how we should be involved I actually think is less important than building a platform where if people want to talk about that, it’s really easy to talk about that and find different points of view.