Take control of your Facebook News Feed

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You may be missing updates from friends and pages you care about due to a change Facebook has made in its news feed. As a default, Facebook is only feeding news from the people and places you interact with most. So an old friend, for instance, may have announced a marriage engagement you may have missed. (Of course, you may have also been spared hundreds of Farmville requests.)

To ensure you’re seeing everything in your feed, just login to Facebook. At the top of your news feed, click “Most Recent”. Then click the arrow next to most recent.

Then under “Show Posts From:” select “All friends and pages.”

Done.

Notice the difference? As our friend on Facebook Amber who alerted us to this issue last week said, “I just can’t believe how much feed I’ve been missing for the last couple of months!”

Why did Facebook do this?

We know the average Facebook user follows more than two hundred friends, pages, groups and events. That makes a Facebook feed flow fast and furiously.

Facebook knows that the more likely you are to engage with your feed, the longer you’ll stay on the site. And who are you most likely to interact with? Someone you’ve interacted with before.

About five years ago, before Facebook became Facebook. I was working at a big digital media company trying to build a social network to compete with MySpace. Industry research was saying that most people didn’t know what to do once they logged into a social network and the solution to this problem was the news feed. For industry research, this was a pretty good prediction. In some way it predicted the appeal of Twitter.

But it wasn’t until Facebook opened its API to third-party developers that the news feed became the lifeblood of the hugest social network phenomenon of the digital age. Facebook will do anything it can to keep your feed vital and addictive—even if it means dropping some of your friends out of your news feed.

Why should I change it back?

We admit it. We’re prejudiced. We want you to follow us on Facebook and see the Internet security tips and news we share. But we also want to keep in contact with the people and things you care about most, even if it isn’t F-Secure.

By taking people out of your feed, Facebook is enabling over-friending and following. This can become a security or spam problem if you’re following the wrong people. But you shouldn’t be following the wrong people. By keeping a realistic view of who you’re actually following, you’ll know when you need to audit your account.

Isn’t this good? It’ll prevent spam.

Maybe it will suppress spam. But the best thing we all can do to stop spam is to warn our friends that they’re sharing questionable or spammy apps. And if the spam continues, unfriend them.

Cheers,

Jason

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