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Will Facebook be your newspaper of the future?

Instead of newspaper moguls and editors deciding the news everyone sees, Facebook’s algorithms can tailor the news to the interests of the individual, delivering a mix of world news, community events, and updates about friends and family.

This from Rob Lever (@rleverafp) reporting that Facebook is realizing its goal of becoming the personalized newspaper for billions of people.

Not to laugh. A Pew Research Center study found Facebook is already a source of news for at least 30 percent of Americans and a huge driver of traffic to news sites.

Getting your news and information from Facebook is not altogether bad.

Alan Mutter (@newsosaur), a digital media consultant and former editor of the Sun Chicago Times, told Levin “It’s intimate, it’s relevant, it’s extraordinarily timely and it’s about you. That’s more than any newspaper can do.”

Facebook delivers personal Newsfeeds using algoritms that taking into account tens of thousands, per Nikki Usher (@nikkiusher), a George Washington University journalism professor specializing in new media.

Facebook has all the data to tell you what all of your friends are reading, so you have a better chance of seeing things that you are interested in.

The reason Facebook has so many engineers and data scientists is to continually make the algorithm better. The algorithm gets stronger as more people use it.

I am using Facebook more and more. As I add people as “Facebook friends” who are not friends in real life or even people I know personally, I get more information of value to my life.

Who’s to say these people I trust for news, insight, and commentary are not a better source for news than traditional news editors? My trust and respect for them only increases as they share items from their personal lives.

Traditional journalism and media is not going away. After all, Facebook is delivering us news and commentary from the mainstream media, in addition to news from blogs and other social sources. It’s just that what news we see is being decided upon and delivered by people we trust.

Don’t expect the tide to turn back. The number of people using Facebook in this country and around the world continues to increase for all age groups.

Facebook’s penetration into the mobile world also far surpasses the mobile penetration of news sites. Mobile will soon become the primary delivery source of news and information for most people.

Far more people use Facebook than get a daily newspaper or go to the front page of a newspaper’s website. When I ask audiences of lawyers how many people use Facebook compared to get a newspaper, the number is at least twent to one.

I don’t how many people could have foreeen Facebook replacing media moguls and editors in deciding the news we see. I know I could not have.

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