Facebook users are spending less time on the site

Mark Zuckerberg has made it his goal to "fix" Facebook. Now his fixes may be causing new problems for the stock....

Posted: Feb 1, 2018 9:38 AM
Updated: Feb 1, 2018 9:38 AM

Mark Zuckerberg has made it his goal to "fix" Facebook. Now his fixes may be causing new problems for the stock.

Facebook's CEO told investors Wednesday that tweaks made to the content it shows users has led to a notable drop in the amount of time users spend on the social network.

"In total, we made changes that reduced time spent on Facebook by roughly 50 million hours every day," Zuckerberg said in a statement with the company's fourth quarter earnings report.

The decline is said to come from a decision to show fewer viral videos in the News Feed.

Facebook also reported its first-ever decline in daily users in the U.S. and Canada. It had 184 million daily users in this region in the quarter, down from 185 million in the prior quarter.

The stock fell 5% in after-hours trading following the report, a rare decline for a company that consistently outpaces Wall Street's estimates.

Facebook has rattled investors in recent months with a series of announcements in response the platform's role in enabling fake news, filter bubbles and foreign meddling in the U.S. election.

Related: Mark Zuckerberg is fighting to save Facebook

This month, Facebook announced plans to show users more content from friends in the News Feed and less from brands and publishers in an effort to boost the well-being of users. In particular, Zuckerberg targeted videos and articles that users consume passively, without commenting or sharing.

Zuckerberg previously said the change could lead to a drop in user engagement and time spent on the platform, but would ultimately improve the quality of the user experience.

The move raised concerns among investors about the impact on Facebook's core advertising business. For now, Facebook continues to be an ad sales juggernaut.

Sales hit nearly $13 billion for the quarter, an increase of 47% from the same period a year earlier. The company now has 2.13 billion monthly active users and 1.4 billion daily users, and advertisers are eager to reach that massive audience.

Earlier this month, Zuckerberg said his personal goal for 2018 is "fixing" Facebook's many problems. He cited the need to "protect our community from abuse and hate, defending against interference by nation states" and "making sure that time spent on Facebook is time well spent."

In November, he said the company is "investing so much in security that it will impact our profitability." That investment includes doubling the number of people who work on safety and security to 20,000.

The announcement came on the same day that executives from Facebook, Google and Twitter testified before Congressional hearings into how Russian actors used social media to meddle in the 2016 presidential election.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 113081

Reported Deaths: 3231
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds7823176
DeSoto676778
Harrison490283
Jackson439383
Rankin385986
Madison375793
Lee349079
Forrest298078
Jones285384
Washington253799
Lafayette244042
Lauderdale2398134
Lamar219038
Bolivar199477
Oktibbeha197654
Neshoba1820111
Lowndes175562
Panola167638
Leflore163287
Sunflower158849
Warren153255
Monroe146572
Pontotoc145219
Pike137256
Lincoln136856
Marshall136226
Copiah135736
Coahoma124036
Scott123829
Grenada120638
Yazoo119933
Simpson119549
Union116025
Leake113940
Holmes113760
Tate113639
Itawamba111325
Pearl River110559
Adams105243
Prentiss102919
Wayne99421
Alcorn96712
George95718
Covington94525
Marion93342
Tippah86521
Newton84927
Chickasaw83225
Winston82621
Tallahatchie82525
Tishomingo79741
Hancock78727
Attala78126
Clarke72750
Clay68421
Jasper67417
Walthall63327
Calhoun61812
Noxubee59617
Smith58516
Claiborne53416
Montgomery53123
Tunica52317
Yalobusha51314
Lawrence50414
Perry48423
Carroll46812
Greene45918
Stone45514
Amite42013
Humphreys41916
Quitman4176
Jefferson Davis40011
Webster36613
Wilkinson33120
Kemper32115
Benton3194
Sharkey28014
Jefferson27110
Franklin2373
Choctaw2036
Issaquena1064
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 154942

Reported Deaths: 2660
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson22720374
Mobile14405314
Tuscaloosa10066137
Montgomery9820196
Madison907894
Shelby715361
Lee646165
Baldwin644369
Marshall431048
Calhoun416059
Etowah412249
Morgan400033
Houston365532
DeKalb325428
Elmore312852
St. Clair283842
Limestone273630
Walker269993
Talladega259135
Cullman231024
Lauderdale212540
Jackson205515
Autauga202130
Franklin201731
Colbert193330
Russell19053
Blount187325
Dallas186027
Chilton182632
Escambia171428
Coffee16829
Covington166629
Dale163851
Chambers133043
Pike131313
Tallapoosa129587
Clarke127317
Marion105029
Butler99840
Barbour9969
Marengo98222
Winston90613
Geneva8447
Lawrence81131
Pickens81117
Randolph80514
Bibb80114
Hale74830
Cherokee72314
Clay72212
Lowndes70228
Henry6386
Bullock63717
Monroe63610
Washington62312
Crenshaw59830
Perry5816
Wilcox55912
Fayette55713
Conecuh55613
Cleburne5327
Macon53020
Sumter46821
Lamar4595
Choctaw38712
Greene34016
Coosa1993
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