Avoiding Friends on Facebook

Ok, yes I know the idea behind Facebook is to find friends and be connected.  So you joined Facebook to connect with relatives and friends, and just when you think you are done you have more friend requests.  Then you friend acquaintances, and before you know it your News Feed is jammed with a lot of stuff you don’t care about.  If that sounds like your News Feed it is time to hide from some of these “friends”.

Now, how do you hide News Feed posts  from someone without their knowledge so you don’t hurt their feelings?

The simplest way to ban someone from your News Feed, and they will never know, is to go to their Profile or Timeline, click on the Friends button (the one with the check mark and next to the Message button), and click on the Show in News Feed option from the dropdown.  Clicking on items in this dropdown will add or remove the check mark.  In this case a check mark indicates updates will show, no check mark means they won’t show.  No muss no fuss!

If that is too drastic and you don’t want to ban all posts from this friend in your News Feed, this dropdown also allows you to select which type of updates you want to appear in your News Feed.  Additionally the dropdown also gives you the opportunity to Unfriend.  If you do unfriend your former friend does not get a notification but they will find out they are no longer your friend if they try to visit your Profile/Timeline.

An alternative way to trim your News Feed is to click in the top right corner of a post on your News Feed.  The dropdown will give you choices to Unsubscribe, or to receive All Updates, Most Updates, or Only Important Updates.  Facebook is deciding here what is important or what to not show based upon its own algorithm.  For more control over what updates to receive, use the method from a friend’s Profile/Timeline described above.

Don’t forget that your News Feed has a Most Recent and Top Stories Sort or filter (top right corner of your News Feed).   It is likely you have already missed some of your friend’s posts anyway.   If you are interested in what you’ve missed, the best way to review all posts from a particular friend is to go directly to their Profile or Timeline.

Now, what if you don’t want your friends to see your posts?  Then you want to add them to your Restricted List.  By doing so, they will only see posts that you share publicly.  Navigate to Privacy Settings, Blocked People and Apps, click on Manage Blocking,  and then click on Edit List from  Add Friends to your Restricted List.  They will never know!

5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Marci
    May 09, 2012 @ 08:18:32

    You can also use the Close Friends designation or create a list containing the important people. I do that to filter out the companies, fan pages, etc. that I belong to when i want to actually read posts from real live people.


  2. Jeri Usbay
    May 09, 2012 @ 09:00:20

    Yes, Marci! Once you accumulate friends, especially those that post frequently creating lists to filter your News Feed becomes necessary. Thanks for your


  3. Jenny
    May 09, 2012 @ 21:57:27

    It’s tricky. It can be very time consuming reading your newsfeed. Is it possible to have 1000 plus friends and keep up with everyone? And yet I’ve gotten to know some people better by reading their posts. I know how it feels when even someone you don’t know very well denies your friend request. Rejection never feels good. It’s taught me to be sensitive to people’s feelings and try to acknowledge what they share by clicking “like”. One solution is to never post anything yourself and only send private messages but then that tweeks the question: what are you doing here in the first place? Do you need Facebook to keep in touch with close friends and family?


  4. Jeri Usbay
    May 10, 2012 @ 06:08:50

    Thanks for your thoughts, Jenny. One would hope that Facebook does not replace actual face to face time with others, but I fear that it does at times, perhaps due to convenience!


  5. Jenny
    May 10, 2012 @ 12:50:23

    yes, it’s convenient but I also think it’s a new form of communication that I would call “the other”. You might post something and you don’t know how people react: some people will be amused, some annoyed, and others indifferent. I believe it’s an affirmation of one’s identity. When you upload a photo who is the “real” you? Are you always happy and smiling? It’s the part of you that you choose to represent. It’s not a lie but a facet of the truth. Many people post silly things and/or apparently trivial things. But if someone takes the trouble to post then it’s not trivial to them and once you realize that then it becomes harder to ignore a post. Still, I can’t believe that someone thinks I care about her dog’s birthday! I find it all very fascinating. Meanwhile you have some good tips on how to handle the inevitable social awkwardness. Thanks!


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