Facebook Live videos now let you fast forward through the fluff

Smart skipping

I'm guilty of this: Starting a Facebook Live video replay, sitting through 1-2 minutes (or less) of it, then clicking away because it was boring/not funny/whatever.

Facebook knows there's many more people like me who don't watch Live videos simply because the beginning doesn't grab us, and we have no idea when it does get good. To keep us fixed to our screens, it wants to do something about this video exodus. The most exciting part? It actually can.

The company is rolling out an engagement graph for Live video replays, reports TechCrunch, that shows at what moments viewers of the live broadcast had the strongest reactions. The graph is based off of Live comments and reaction emojis, and will let replay viewers skip ahead to the parts that garnered the most audience feedback.

This way, folks who watch the video after-the-fact can fast forward to spots that are actually worth watching, rather than having to sit through the whole thing or guess when a reaction-worthy moment takes place.

Facebook Live video engagement graph

(Credit: TechCrunch)

According to Facebook's head of video Fidji Simo, about two-thirds of the time spent watching a Facebook Live video is when it's no longer, you know, live. Users, then, are missing the live broadcast, but still want to see a video that's saved to the site.

The graph should facilitate them doing so in a more meaningful way than what's currently on offer.

If the graph looks and sounds a little bit like SoundCloud's spikes and timed comments, Facebook's engagement graph is definitely in the same vein.

The new feature should give viewers more reason to watch Facebook Live videos - at least the most interesting parts of them - and help creators plan out their videos to include moments worth tuning into. While it sounds like an interesting new tool for professional creators to take advantage of, there's also plenty of potential for amateur broadcasters to learn how to incorporate engagement-worthy moments into their streams as well.

Some users will start to see the engagement graph starting today, while others will have to wait a bit longer. And just in case it wasn't clear, the graph will only appear on videos that are no longer live.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

News Editor (US)

As the US News Editor, Michelle (Twitter, Google+) keeps her eye on all things tech with particular interest on phones, tablets and finding out who the people are behind the devices. Any phone that can survive a regular (accidental) drop has her vote for best handset. Michelle previously worked covering local news in the Bay Area and has been with TechRadar since July 2012.