Facebook is helping users to fast track to the most engaging parts of Live Video with a new visual timeline powered by reactions. Facebook claims that the feature will encourage viewers to spend more time with the content they watch on the site and help them to navigate longer streams and video replays more easily.
The social media giant has revealed that around two-thirds of the total watch time on Facebook Live is from users consuming content when a video is no longer live. To make catching up more interesting and relevant for these users, Facebook is now going to introduce a graph of the reaction volume, which will be made up of comments and reaction emojis.
This means that viewers will be able to skip to the good bits and find the places where a video gets interesting. The blue timeline will show peaks and valleys representing the differing volumes of engagement during the runtime and will be overlaid on the progress bar for each video.
“When people watch a live video after the fact, the engagement graph provides a valuable signal that can help people explore the video and easily identify highlights that they may find engaging, which could encourage people to spend more time with a video that they might have otherwise skipped over,” Facebook’s Head of Video, Fidji Simo, said.
The feature could theoretically change how users watch videos on Facebook, as they will be drawn to the sections that are the most talked about. This may also influence how content creators shoot and pace their videos during live streams. Facebook has confirmed that they are not currently planning to bring reaction timelines to traditional videos, as it is currently more suited to the longer content format.
In addition to the arrival of visual aids for engagement, Facebook has also said that it will now replay reactions for Live Video, so comments and emojis will appear as if users are watching the broadcast live. Viewers will also see the profile pictures of their friends pop up if they have reacted during the video. The new features are rolling out to some users now.