How to deal with some of the most irritating Facebook features

Facebook is constantly modifying and updating its features, causing confusion and annoyance for users. It feels like those who really feel like they cannot be without this social networking website in spite of the anger that these updates may cause, have to adapt to the changes and move on. However, that does not mean that there are no ways to improve your experience with Facebook. Here is a list of solutions that will help you to cope with some of Facebook’s most irritating features.

Limit the audience of your Timeline

If you are conscious about what others (or you in a moment of bad judgement) may post on your timeline, make sure to adjust the privacy settings. Individual posts posted by you can be deleted (choose the arrow menu that appears next to any post and select Delete). You can also hide posts where others tagged you from your timeline by going to that particular post and selecting the relevant option. You can keep old posts in your timeline available for your friends only as well.  In the drop down menu (the arrow pointing down) on Facebook, select Settings and then Privacy. Alternatively you can click on the lock icon for a list of Privacy shortcuts and select See More Settings.  Then select “Limit the audience for posts you’ve shared with friends of friends or public” and click Limit Past Posts and then Limit Old Posts to ensure that they are only seen by your friends.


Avoid spamming from your subscribers

If you want to share part of your Facebook page with a wider audience, you can allow subscribers. This means that other people would not require to be confirmed as a Friend in order to get access to your updates. While in some cases subscribers may be a good way to connect with people you don’t know and that share similar interests, it may also lead to spam in your news feed or give other people to access details of your life that you do not want to share with them. In order to get rid of spam and unwanted, even offensive content from your subscribers, you can change the settings of your Followers. Go to the menu, select Settings and then Click on Followers. There you will see the options to only allow Friends to follow you or to block someone and ensure that they cannot access your updates.


Get rid of the trending box

This list of the most popular or talked about topics on Facebook may not be yet available for all users but it definitely can be a pain as it doesn’t seem to fade away, even if you do not necessarily have to click on the trending topics. If you want to get rid of it, you can download the F.B Purity extension in Firefox or add-on for Chrome. There are also versions available for browsers such as Opera and Safari that will allow you to remove the Trending box, as well as disable autoplay for videos, remove links to videos and articles and allow you to filter posts, in order to keep your News Feed clear of things that you are not interested about.


Get rid of App invites

Many of your friends may spend endless hours playing Candy Crush or FarmVille and while what they do with their time is their problem, those annoying invites that appear on your notifications every time they unwittingly request you to share their gaming addiction are an issue that you don’t have to deal with. To put a stop to these irritating invites, go to Settings, select Blocking and customize the options to block the usual suspects that keep sending you these app invites. You can also block specific apps from sending you notification and avoid that they access your personal data.

Stop Apps from sharing too much information

If you do not want everyone to know what songs you are listening to (Spotify) or where you are (Foursquare) you need to change the settings of your apps. Otherwise, they would share all these details with your friends by default. In Privacy Settings, select Apps. Go to Instant Personalization and click Edit. Uncheck the option that says “Enable instant personalization on partner websites”.  This option is intended for advertisers and is meant to provide websites such as Bing with details that will allow them to personalize your experience. However, it can also share this details with your friends, which can be very annoying as they do not need to know every little detail of what you do.

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