NEW YORK —
"The amount of stories you have available to see has continued to increase," Struhar says. "What we try to do now is give you more control over what stories you see in your feed."
With that kind of control, the company hopes people will spend more time on the site and share more information about themselves so companies can target them better with advertisements.
Paul Friedman, a 59-year-old dentist in New York City, says he's using Facebook less now than when he first signed on four years ago, but he's not sure if the site has "become less interesting or that I am just less interested in it," he says.
"I think that it might have seemed more interesting in the past because it was a new 'forum,'" Friedman says. "Now that it is not new, it takes more unique content to make it interesting."
That said, Friedman still uses Facebook to see if friends are organizing events, such as music gigs or yoga classes, or to check out interesting YouTube videos. He says seeing the same jokes reappear doesn't really bother him.
"Ninety-nine percent of it is a waste of time anyway," he says. "If it wasn't for the one percent, I'd close my account."
When it comes to people of a certain age, Friedman may be in the minority. Tammy Gordon, vice president of the AARP's social media team, says the 50-plus set is just now settling into Facebook. The organization's own Facebook page grew from 80,000 fans to a million last year. This age group is growing the fastest because older people tend to be latecomers to Facebook. According to a recent Pew survey, 32 percent of people 65 or older use social networking sites, compared with 83 percent of those 18 to 29.