Facebook wants to hire someone to decide what you see on Instagram


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How would you like to be that arbiter who makes or breaks online experience and even presence of about a billion people, with one flick of you censor's switch?

No – that doesn't sound appealing? Looks like you would rather spend your time on Earth creatively and meaningfully, doing anything from finding the cure for cancer, gardening, perfecting the design of lemon zesters, or campaigning for human and digital rights online.

Otherwise, there's this particular job ad posted by Facebook – the social media and advertising behemoth – hiring just the right person for its image and advertisement dissemination arm – Instagram.

But now the people want to know: if it's not for you, and it's not for us, and it's not for anyone we're willing to own up to knowing – who is it for?

Facebook says: the right candidate must be turned on by their actions affecting the global community at its employer's mercy – that's more than a billion people – and do so in – “countless ways.”

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Of course, it's all about “love” – Instagram was made for people to love other people, and it's made to bring them closer to those they love. And if they just so happen to also love one of the many products mercilessly shilled by any number of “influencers” that have nowadays hijacked the once truly exciting and creative platform – all the better.

The person Facebook looks to hire here, has a task even more difficult than merely rebranding “shilling” as “inspiration”: namely, they will work on the Home tab – that place users see when they first open the app – “and where they go to view and interact with the Feed, Stories, and Live content from the accounts they follow.”

In other words, from there, the successful candidate will guide the unwashed masses to where they didn't even know they wanted to go – as Facebook uses “machine learning to rank and personalize” what people end up seeing on that “home screen.”

Machine learning is great, the Facebook ad continued – but left out the fact that while it's excellent at matching patterns – and determining what Instagram users end up seeing on the home screen – it pretty much sucks at intuiting where those humans might want to go on from there.

But that's where another human comes in.

“We're looking for a PM to join our team and help define and build the future of ranking for our Home tab, encompassing our ranking work across Feed, Stories, Comments, and Live (…) You'll need to bring analytical rigor, qualitative problem solving and creative vision with the ability to evaluate problems from all of these angles and be comfortable working in a rapidly evolving space with ambiguous problems,” Facebook said.

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Didi Rankovic

Didi Rankovich is an experienced online journalist, editor, and translator, with a career spanning over ten years writing for major a English-language website in Serbia, and previously working as translator for international organizations and peacekeepers in the Balkans. Rankovich is passionate about free and open source tech and is a head contributor for Reclaim The Net, focusing on lead stories. [email protected]