During a Q&A session at the Indian Institute of Technology in New Delhi this week, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg vowed to significantly scale back unsolicited game messages exchanged between users on the social networking site.
Zuckerberg’s statement followed up on a question posed by an audience member who expressed frustration at the frequent messages sent out by King’s popular Facebook app Candy Crush Saga.
“I sent a message to the person who runs the team in charge of our developer platform, and I said that by the time I do this town hall Q&A, it would be good if we had a solution to this problem,” Zuckerberg stated.
Currently, friends of active gamers on Facebook are frequently deluged with requests to join in-game activities, even if the targeted users don’t play social games. Zuckerberg indicates that improvements to the site will result in more carefully targeted notifications, and gaming-focused invitations will be limited to active players.
Candy Crush Saga has proven especially aggressive with its invitations, regularly and repeatedly bombing users’ Facebook feeds with unsolicited advertisements and requests for player assistance. Candy Crush Saga players often unknowingly annoy their Facebook friends with automatically distributed notifications, and Facebook currently offers no way to opt-out of these messages.
“I actually saw this question, it was the top-voted question on my thread,” Zuckerberg explained. “There are some tools that are kind of outdated that allow people to send invitations to people who’ve never used a game, who have gotten invitations in the past but don’t play games on Facebook.
“We hadn’t prioritized shutting that down, we just had other priorities. But if this is the top thing that people care about, we’ll prioritize that and do it. So we’re doing it!”
Zuckerberg did not issue a timeframe for the feature’s implementation.