Monday 15 June 2015

Managing What You See on Facebook

Facebook has changed how you manage your News Feed since I wrote this post, so I shall add the updates, but in the meantime, here's an article which tells you everything, via Social Media Today (13 July 2015).

A couple of clients, and attendees on my course in April have asked how to control what they see in their Facebook News Feed, without unfriending anyone. Is there a way of hiding those updates they don’t want to see? I.e. from those who post perhaps too much political stuff, or too many ‘what I had for breakfast' pictures. Personally, I don’t mind photos of food, although posts around the UK General Election did get a bit much, and I raced through my News Feed that week. Clients have asked, 'What is the Facebook equivalent of muting someone you follow on Twitter?' (see this article in The Guardian for more info on that).

Hiding updates from my News Feed isn't something I worry about too much, as I don't accept Friend requests from someone I haven't seen online before. There are a few dodgy Facebook Friends floating around, and I do hear stories about them, so be careful. If you're an author, and worry that you're rejecting a reader, set up a Facebook Author Page so readers can Like that page for your updates instead. My next post will explain how to set up lists for your Facebook Friends, which can help you manage which posts your Friends see.
Here’s how you control what you see in your Facebook News Feed.

When I recently checked this for myself, I noticed that Facebook had unfollowed Friends/Author Pages without asking me, many of them good Friends, and Authors whose updates I wish to see. So I re-followed those Friends and Pages. It’s worth checking you’re seeing what you want to see.

Click in the top right corner of your Facebook page, on the triangle, then select News Feed Preferences:

You will then have the option to go through People, Pages and Groups. If you wish to unfollow, then click on the box which says Following, which will then become +Follow. I don't want to unfollow any of these lovely people:

For those Friends and Pages which Facebook had unfollowed for me, I clicked on +Follow to change them to Following.

How to unfollow an advert: 

I recently bought a pair of shoes online, when I couldn't get my size in the shop. For a week or two afterwards, Facebook displayed regular adverts of this exact shoe in my News Feed, in the exact colour I'd ordered, which was a bit of a cheek, I thought (and slightly Big Brother-ish). So I unfollowed that advert.

Of course, as a writer, you wouldn't want to unfollow Amazon, but here's how you would unfollow an advert, by clicking on the 'v' in the top right corner:

How to unfollow a Friend or Page, when checking your News Feed:

I wouldn’t want to unfollow the Social Media Examiner Facebook Page, as their posts are useful, but here’s what you’d do if you wanted to unfollow updates from a Friend (perhaps a request you accepted in haste) or Page, by clicking on the 'v' in the top right corner again:

Selecting Most Recent or Top Stories:

You can also select the order in which posts are posted from: Top Stories or Most Recent, when clicking on News Feed on the left. This is handy if you want to find a post from your own Facebook Page, to see what it looks like in a News Feed (perhaps if you've just boosted it):

There’s more detail on all of the above, and other stuff here, from Facebook

Added on 9 September 2015: My follow up post is now ready, Managing What Your Friends See on Facebook. This is useful for learning how to separate writing acquaintances and readers from family and friends on Facebook.

Another Post on Facebook: Is it Worth Paying to Promote a Facebook Page?

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  1. What a great post. I didn't know Facebook unfollowed pages without you knowing - I shall have to go and check now.

    1. Thank you Wendy! Yes, I couldn't understand how it had happened, the Facebook equivalent of when Twitter unfollows people without you knowing :-)

  2. The most annoying thing is as you said when you shop online and all those adverts appear showing what you looked at. It's so intrusive. Although it's not just on face book it follows you everywhere online.

    1. Yes Anne, just saw that shoe ad pop up again when I was Googling something :-)! Thanks for reading, and for leaving a comment.

  3. As you know I'm on;y just getting to grips with Twitter so I shall await your next post and then maybe consider changing my FB page to an Author page only. I do have one set up by the publishers of 7 of my books but I can't use it for books by other publishers. Time will tell and thank you for giving us yours.

    1. Thanks for reading Gwen! Good luck with it all :-)