Some Important News Feed Tips for the New New Facebook

Sep 23, 2011   //   by Raylene   //   Blog, Facebook  //  3 Comments

It seems almost silly to ask if you’ve noticed the changes happening on Facebook. It is definitely the hottest topic of conversation all over the web, so I’m sure you’ve seen the updates and may be wondering about a few of the new things.

While I’m still getting a handle on ALL of the things going on with the new Facebook updates, I can give you a bit of information on what I do know now, hopefully before more changes take place!

How Many and What Types of Updates
Facebook: How Many and What Types of Updates (click for larger image)

With the new changes on Facebook News Feeds, you can ‘curate’ or collect the kinds of information that you want to see from your friends. One thing you can do for anyone in your friend list is this: hover  over (hold your mouse over without clicking) your friend’s name, anywhere you see it on Facebook and some SUBSCRIBE options will appear. If you are on the News Feed, wait for the box to load and then hover over the “Subscribe” link (even if you’re already subscribed, as then it will say “Subscribed”). Then uncheck the “Comments and Likes” choice and “Games” or other things you might not like to see from their activity. Most people would rather their comments on friends’ posts not be made public. You can customize this setting for each of your friends.

Facebook Ticker
Options even available from the Facebook Ticker (click for larger image)

These settings are also available directly from the Ticker (mini-feed) in the upper right of your News Feed page.  Again, hover over anybody’s name in blue (as a link), and from there you can select HOW MANY of their updates you want to receive (All Updates, Most Updates, or Only Important) AND you can also select WHAT TYPES of updates, turning off “Likes and Comments” or whatever else you’d rather not see (as mentioned above). As far as I can tell, this will effect both the Ticker and the main News Feed.

Facebook Newsfeed Subscribe Options
Facebook News Feed Subscribe Options (click for larger image)

You can also decide what you see as Top Stories in your news feed and what you don’t want to see at all. For PEOPLE, you’ll notice a “V” where the “*” or “X” used to be beside their post in your News Feed. Click that “V” and you can choose how much of that person’s activity you want to see. You can also choose if that particular kind of activity is something you consider to be a Top Story. Essentially, if you take the time to make your selections carefully, you have the ability to be in almost complete control of your News Feed.

Do you appreciate seeing posts from your favorite pages in your News Feed? With the changes that Facebook has already made and those still to be released, the way Page Updates show in your News Feed is also changing. You will only be seeing updates from pages that you interact with on a regular basis, or have interacted with recently.

If you can’t see your favorite PAGES’ posts in your News Feed, go to that page, LIKE something on that page, and then you SHOULD see it in yours News Feed.

Top Story for Pages
How to select a Top Story for Facebook Pages from the News Feed (click for larger image)

From there, mark the posts you’re interested in as a “Top Story” (click the V over on the right side of the post – where the X or * used to be – if you’re viewing the post in your News Feed) so that you will keep seeing posts from that page in the future.

Do this with ALL the pages you want to continue to interact with and see in your News Feed. ALSO interacting with updates (liking, commenting, sharing, etc.) from pages will help ensure that you receive their posts in your News Feed.

It may take you a day or two (or 5!) to adjust the settings for your friends and to make changes for your chosen Pages, but you have the ability to select what you want to see for everyone you see in your news feed. When they show up in your feed, follow these instructions and set the options for that person. Then it’s done!

I almost think of it this way – before these most recent Facebook changes, we were HIDING things (posts, info, people), which is still possible. Now, we’re curating things or collecting information from our friends and various sources, and gathering them in our News Feed, or choosing to exclude them from the feed. Some of the functionality is the same, yes, but the interface is different, and for me personally it has a different feel about it, and the purpose behind it feels collective rather than exclusive. Choosing top stories is also a nice option.

I have heard of a few more options for adjusting your News Feed (creating lists, using Google Chrome extensions, etc.) and as I get more information on them, I’ll try to include it here on the blog!

I understand that we often don’t like change, so I hope to do my best to help people to wade through the changes, and make it obvious how to use the features I’ve discovered. Not everyone will like it. I personally don’t mind the changes to the platform and intend to work within it, seeing a lot of potential and some fun new changes coming. In just a few weeks, people will be settled in with the newness of it, those who were looking for an excuse to leave will have left, and we’ll all carry on with business as usual! LOL

Keep up to date with the Facebook updates and changes, and many other social media topics, by subscribing to my posts here on Off the Wall Social Media, liking my Off the Wall Social Media Facebook page (and marking my posts to your Top Stories), and following Off the Wall Social Media on Twitter.

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