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US Election Most Discussed Topic on Facebook

  • VOA News

FILE - In this May 16, 2012, file photo, the Facebook logo is displayed on an iPad in Philadelphia. Facebook reports financial results Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2016. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File) While Facebook is not selling ads on the Election Day livestreams, it could generate more visits to the site, bolstering its reputation as a destination for live news and pushing back against Twitter, where users often "live-tweet" major events.

Facebook says the most discussed topic in the world for 2016 was the U.S. presidential election. It was the second year in a row the election was the most talked about on the social media platform.

Rounding out the top 10 most talked about subjects were “Brazilian politics,” Pokemon Go, Black Lives Matter, “Rodrigo Duterte & Philippine Presidential Election,” Olympics, Brexit, Super Bowl, David Bowie and Muhammad Ali.

“The top 10 moments of this year’s Year in Review were measured by how frequently a topic was mentioned in Facebook posts made between January 1 and November 27, 2016,” Facebook wrote in a blog post Thursday. “To put this list together, mentions were analyzed in an aggregated, anonymized way and then ranked to create a snapshot of the year on Facebook. The top 10 Live videos were measured by total cumulative views.”

Facebook Live, the company’s streaming video application, had different leaders.

The most-viewed Facebook Live video was a woman wearing a Chewbacca mask. She became known as “Chewbacca Mom.”

Given the amount of news Americans get through Facebook, there has been some speculation that the site is flooded by so-called "fake news". Some have gone so far to say fake news influenced the 2016 election.

The company’s chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg said she doesn’t think fake news influenced the election outcome.

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg defended his company in November, saying the amount of fake news on the site is small. But he said the company is going to take steps to crack down on “misinformation.”

During the campaign, a former Facebook employee said the company was suppressing news from conservative news outlets. In response, the company fired the Trending Topics staff and automated how Trending Topics are identified.

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