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Two ways to make your friends more interesting on Facebook

Science

Two ways to make your friends more interesting on Facebook

Going to Facebook can be a demoralising experience. Who are these people? Why are they posting such nonsense?

The sad fact is, they are your friends and they put that stuff there because they think people, including you, will like it.

But while it may be too late to change your friends, you can at least filter them on Facebook and make your newsfeed seem like the Alonquin round table. Possibly.

Don’t unfriend, just unfollow

Unfriending someone on Facebook is a deliberate act. So many people see it as an aggressive act.

But if those people are annoying you, clogging up your timeline with unlikely friendships between goats and kitten, and the seventeen things you didn’t know about Arkansas, then they have to go. But at least you can do it without causing offence.

Simply unfollow them instead of unfriending them. This stops all of their twaddle from appearing on your wall, while still offering you the opportunity to peek into their lives as and when you want.

All you do is hit the ‘Following’ button on the pages of your Facebook squad. You’ll see options to unfollow them as well as ‘See First’. Reserve ‘See First’ for people who you want to hear from as often as possible, not the people who are making you despair – for them, simply tap unfollow option. Done.

Start to rank your friends

When all those ‘uplifting’ quotes and You need to add some editorial rigour to your newsfeed.

One way is to to give Facebook’s feed algorithms a jolt, by labelling your contacts as ‘close friends’ and ‘acquaintances’ –  just look at the ‘Friends’ tab and you’ll see a drop-down box next to each of your followers’ entries, and right there you can label them with one of those two key tags. The updates from your close friends will appear on your news feed, diluting the lamentable drivel from your ‘acquaintances’. So, assuming your friends’ updates are of a higher quality, then so is your newsfeed.

Get those two done, and you’ve changed nothing, but, on Facebook at least, your world seems a whole lot brighter.

Jimmy Leach is a digital consultant, working with governments, organisations and people. He tweets at @JimmyTLeach

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