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"If a story is from a publisher in your area, and you either follow the publisher's Page or your friend shares a story from that outlet, it might show up higher in News Feed", the release said.

Shares of the company were up 1 percent at $188.64 after reporting quarterly results after the bell, reversing an earlier decline.

Sandberg said she was optimistic about potential revenue from ads on "stories" on Facebook and Instagram, while Chief Financial Officer David Wehner said the average price per ad increased 43 percent in quarter. Facebook's chief financial officer David Wehner told analysts he did not expect the decline of 700,00 daily users in the US and Canada to continue.

Zuckerberg said the update to News Feed algorithms is part of his company's plan to provide a platform that "isn't just fun but also good for your well-being and for society".

Facebook Inc. said people are spending less time on its social network, and fewer people are coming to the service daily in North America, for the first time ever.

The move raised concerns among investors about the impact on Facebook's core advertising business.

"I want to be clear: by making these changes, I expect the time people spend on Facebook and some measures of engagement will go down", he wrote on Facebook on Jan 12. "In total, we made changes that reduced time spent on Facebook by roughly 50 million hours every day".

"We don't anticipate that that will be a continuing trend but, given the high penetration rate, we do think there will be some fluctuation there", Wehner said.

Zuckerberg has vowed to fix the issues at the social network, amid concerns it was used as a platform for Russian meddling in the USA elections.

The move is the latest in a series of significant changes to the "News Feed", this year. Usage also rose about 14 percent from a year ago on both a daily and monthly basis. For now, Facebook continues to be an ad sales juggernaut. EMarketer reckons this year, Facebook will have 18.4 percent of the $266 billion market, second only to Google's 31.3 percent share.

Sales hit almost $13 billion for the quarter, an increase of 47% from the same period a year earlier. Zuckerberg said the company will focus on "time well spent" and "meaningful interactions" for users - terms Facebook hasn't said how it will define or measure. In 2016, ad revenue for the newspaper industry, was about $18 billion, a decrease of 10 percent compared to the previous year, according to the center's annual report about the state of the news media.

Excluding a tax provision, the company earned $2.21 per share, topping analysts' estimates of $1.95, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Facebook, which has more than 2 billion users worldwide, said it's prioritizing trustworthy, informative and local news. But investors are clearly watching whether a raft of changes to the site to address the many issues raised in the past year could slow time spent on the site, which ultimately drives ad revenue.