You may or may not know that everything you see in your News Feed on Facebook is chosen for you by an algorithm that was built to determine which content has priority. Unfortunately, that means that some things you want to see, from time to time, will get buried. Mark Zuckerberg and company started taking more granular control over what gets seen and what is hidden as a way to combat content overload and keep you from getting frazzled as you attempt to enjoy your cat videos, internet outrage stories and friends’ baby photos.
Last year, Facebook announced new ways to control what gets seen in your feed and now they’re going further in giving you the power to choose and make sure you never miss something you want to see from a close friend or relative - even if it is just a status update about what they’re currently eating. Today, Facebook announced that they’ve released new controls that have refined and expanded your News Feed Preferences. Apparently, they’ve been testing this with a small group of users since May and now that it’s available to all of us, what can we expect?
First up, if you want to make sure you don’t miss posts from specific friends and Pages, you can now prioritize which ones show up at the top of your News Feed first. From the News Feed Preferences menu you’ll just tap on a friend’s profile picture and from that point forward, their most recent post since you last logged in will show up at the top of your News Feed with a star next to it to remind you why it’s at the top of your feed.
Not so much about controlling who you already follow, showing up in your News Feed, but still helping you control what you want to see, they’ve now added a new Pages discovery tool that will serve new Page suggestions to you based on Facebook Pages you’ve already liked.
If you want to ensure that all of this is working like it should, the newly refined People and Pages to unfollow option will show you a list of the top People and Pages you’ve seen in your News Feed in the last week. You can also see a list of people you’ve unfollowed in the past and choose to re-follow them again.
These new controls are currently available on iOS and should be rolling out to Android users in the coming weeks. Check out the new controls, then let us know what you think of them in the comments below. If you have any questions about using them, you can ask in the comments as well and I’ll do my best to help you out!
Now if I could just get Facebook to keep my feed the way I set it, seeing posts in chronological order on all my devices and desktop, I would truly feel like I have control over the News Feed. Sigh.