Whether it’s never-ending posts from annoying “friends” with verbal diarrhea, or repetitive links to stupid survey sites, the truth is that sometimes spending time on Facebook is more irritating than productive.
The bad news is that Facebook’s algorithms to determine what appears in your News Feed are a closely guarded secret. The social media giant simply says, “The stories that show in your News Feed are influenced by your connections and activity on Facebook.”
But there is hope — you have the power to tweak a few settings under the hood.
In a matter of minutes, we can help make Facebook more interesting to you again with some clever ways to change what appears in your News Feed. Read our five simple steps below to ensure what you see when you next log in is more relevant to you.
1. ‘Unfollow’ annoying people.
The quickest and easiest way to stop seeing irritating posts from Facebook friends is to unfollow them. This means you stay Facebook friends, but won’t get any more content from them in your News Feed.
It’s an incredible tool — you don’t have to offend people by unfriending them, but you don’t have to see their shiz anymore.
To unfollow someone, simply click on the drop-down arrow in the top-right corner of one of his or her posts, and select “Unfollow [Name].”
Alternatively, head to the person’s profile page and click on the “Following” button at the bottom-right corner of his or her cover photo.
Give it a go. It’s really satisfying — the digital equivalent of telling people to “zip it.”
2. Avoid content from certain Pages.
You can also avoid seeing posts from particular Facebook Pages. This is useful if you have friends who continually share content from StupidDumbSite.com, and you can’t bear to see another survey about what kind of breakfast cereal they’d be or what their mystical pixie name is.
When you see a post from a Page you’re not interested in seeing content from, hit that same top-right arrow and select the “Hide all from [Name]” option. You’ll still see your friend’s other posts, but the StupidDumbSite.com content will blissfully stop.
3. Tell Facebook which posts bug you.
You can “tell” Facebook which types of posts you want to see fewer of in the future. Whether it’s friends tagged in strangers’ photos, location-based check-ins or links to articles you couldn’t care less about, you can flag the content as uninteresting, and you’ll see less of it next time you log in.
To do this on any post you’re not interested in, simply click on that drop-down arrow and select “I don’t want to see this.” Theoretically — if Facebook’s secret sauce works — if you click a virtual “no thanks” to enough photo tag posts, for example, you won’t have to witness your college buddy’s bar crawls every single weekend.
4. Take Facebook’s survey.
Facebook knows folks are getting ticked off with what they see in their stream, and it wants to help. You can take a short survey to improve what appears in your News Feed.
Click the drop-down arrow at the top-right corner on any post in your News Feed and select “More Options.” Then choose “Take a survey to make News Feed better.”
You’ll then have 15 screens to click through and give a rating in order to — again, in theory — improve your future Facebook experience. It’s worth a try, right? We tested it out and it does seem to remove some of the more spammy posts we used to see — but maybe our more annoying friends are just having a quiet couple of weeks.
5. Manage your News Feed preferences.
Finally, you can manage your News Feed Preferences via Facebook’s main settings menu. To access this, click on the drop-down arrow at the top-right of your Home Page and select “News Feed Preferences.”
From here you can view a summary of your most viewed content, see who you’ve unfollowed, and recap on Pages and Groups that show you content.
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This post first appeared on Mashable