Few people have neutral feelings about Fox News. The conservative network, often accused of peddling fear and misinformation to its viewers, either outrages critics with its misleading, sometimes blatantly false, coverage or outrages dedicated viewers with stories of the Left’s alleged insidious objectives.
Either way, the result is anger, and now there are numbers reflecting that.
A NewsWhip study found that Fox News posts dominate Facebook engagement – and the angry face emoji is the primary response.
NewsWhip published the results of a study of Facebook news feed content and Fox News posts got the most shares, comments, and reactions – almost 20,000,000 more than the closest competitor, NBC news.
That gap is even more pronounced when they looked at angry reactions alone: Fox News posts got 6,793,779 angry reactions. Breitbart came in second, lagging behind with 4,104,224 angry reactions.
This new report by NewsWhip is really troubling. Look at the most shared and most commented stories on Facebook in 2019 to date… Some real news, but a whole lotta lies and rage and fear-mongering https://t.co/LGs3IUnL7p pic.twitter.com/m5PWhN0c1w
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) March 16, 2019
Facebook, as you may have heard, is trying to be in the business of meaningful interactions and building communities rather than breaking democracy
…even though the platform’s refocus has contributed to many, many more angry reactions. https://t.co/5yp0Ce7OCu
— Nieman Lab (@NiemanLab) March 18, 2019
It's really telling that "angry" is now the most common reaction to political content on Facebook. It's doubtless, in part, an emotion publishers deliberately tap to make their content go viral. https://t.co/ZJnxDAFrUp pic.twitter.com/XDQjeqCW98
— Carl Miller (@carljackmiller) March 17, 2019
Mark Zuckerberg announced last year that Facebook would be updating their algorithm to help people connect with each other. “You’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media,” Zuckerberg said in a Facebook post in early 2018. “And the public content you see more will be held to the same standard — it should encourage meaningful interactions between people.”
Zuckerberg’s algorithm overhaul seems to have been a bust – unless you count angry reactions to Fox News articles as “meaningful interactions.”
“Politics was the main driver of Angry reactions in terms of pure numbers,” according the NewsWhip report, “with Fox News driving the most angry reactions of anyone, with nearly double that of anyone else.”
— noel toolan (@noeltoolan) March 18, 2019
A year ago, Facebook changed its algorithm that supplies the News Feed
They prioritised non-publisher content that provokes engagement.
More engagement. More politics. More content about guns and abortion. And “angry” is the top reactionhttps://t.co/ZJnxDAFrUp
— Carl Miller (@carljackmiller) March 16, 2019
Great to see the Quality News Project really paying off after its first year. Fox News dominates with angry reactions and divisive topics driving engagement https://t.co/GTrHKWDstU
— Chris Moran (@chrismoranuk) March 18, 2019
If you see an angry reaction on Facebook you have to angry react too. I don't make the rules.
— ᵂⁱⁿᵗᵉʳ ˢᵒˡˢᵗⁱᶜᵉ 🏔️🗻 (@solly74) March 18, 2019
Subtle rule changes by Facebook have wide societal effects
Angry reaction 😡 dominates with Fox News driving the most angry reactions of anyone, with nearly 2x of anyone else
Fastest way to stop fire is deprive it of oxygen. Post less outrage! 🙏 https://t.co/bj8POEM2k1
— Garry() (@garrytan) March 16, 2019
Less anger and more cat videos, please.