You can beat the algorithm.
Update, Jan. 12, 2018: Facebook did it again. This week, the company announced a major News Feed algorithm update that will show you more posts from your friends and family and fewer posts from businesses or publishers.
It’s not exactly the same as a similar update from 18 months ago, though it’s close. Back then, Facebook was simply giving you more content from your friends. Now, it’s hoping to give you more content you’d actually like to comment on, which is more likely to be from your friends. At least that’s the thinking.
It’s different than the 2016 change as it’s focused on facilitating more interactions between people, including on media stories, whereas the 2016 change was about see more stories from friends.
— Adam Mosseri (@mosseri) January 12, 2018
Still, what if you like seeing posts from publishers? Or hate seeing posts from your family? Here’s what you need to know.
What you see on Facebook is determined by a computer — a News Feed algorithm, to be precise, a piece of software that combines things it knows about your interests with stuff people post to give you a personalized stream of content.
But what if you like seeing posts from brands and publishers (like Recode)? Or you don’t like seeing posts from your distant cousin Alfred who has that obsession with sculptures made out of food?
Well thank goodness, there are simple tricks in News Feed to fix both of these problems. Come hither.
How to see every single post from a friend, brand or publisher on Facebook
Last summer, Facebook rolled out a product called See First, a way to flag Pages or profiles you want to see at the top of your News Feed every time they post something new.
- Visit the page or profile you want to “see first” and be sure you are already a friend or follower of said page.
- Click the blue “Following” button on mobile, or the “Liked” button on desktop, and a menu of options will appear. Click “See First.”
- That’s it. Seriously, it’s that simple.
How to make sure you never see a post from a friend, brand or publisher on Facebook
If you have a friend on Facebook you’re sick of hearing from, and it would be awkward to unfriend them altogether, just “unfollow” them. They won’t know that you’ve unfollowed them, and you won’t see their stuff in your News Feed.
- Visit the page or profile of the friend you wish to see less from.
- Click on the “Friends” or “Following” button right under the profile picture to reveal a menu of options. Click “unfollow.”
- Boom. You’re done.
You can also see first / unfollow people as their stuff appears in your News Feed. Hover your cursor over the person’s name, then click on the “following” button and select “unfollow.”
You can always change your mind on either of these features by revisiting a profile or page. And it’s easy to find suggestions for who to see first or review who you’ve unfollowed by clicking “Settings,” then clicking “News Feed Preferences.”
Now go forth and take back control of your News Feed! And maybe go follow Recode or something. It’s your call, whatever works for you is cool.