Tag Archives: Facebook Timeline

Facebook Newsfeed: Most Recent vs. Top Stories

Did you know that you’re not seeing everything you’ve asked for in Facebook? And, you are seeing some promotional posts that you didn’t ask for. You can get inundated if you saw everything, so Facebook watches what you click on and what you “like.” From that information they decide what are the Top Stories for you. It’s a good thing really, but sometimes you want to have control. There are several ways you can specify what you want to see:

  1. OK … Top Stories: This is the default. If you are looking at your Home Newsfeed, you are seeing Top Stories. Facebook figures out what news it thinks is important to you, including friends and liked company and group pages. With Top Stories view you also see a lot of sponsored posts … Ads. 
  2. Better? … Most Recent: To set your feed to Most Recent on a computer, just click imageon the dropdown arrow next to “NewsFeed” in the left sidebar. On a smartphone Facebook App you need to use the 3-line menu and find the option for “Feeds” then tap on Most Recent.  If you set your NewsFeed to show you Most Recent, then Facebook does not apply the Top Stories filter. It just gets all your friends’ posts and your liked pages and shows them all to you in strict chronological order.  Many people tell me how much they prefer this view. Personally, I think it is too much. I think filtering some of it out is a good thing. You also still get ads in this view.
  3. Best! … Close Friends: For every friend you have the option to categorize them imageas “Close Friend.” Then you can view your newsfeed for only Close Friends. This limits your view to only posts by Close Friends – no Ads!!. But, also no posts from groups or pages – just Friends.
    To add friends to your Close Friends list on a computer, you can go to their Timeline, click on the Friends button and click Close Friends.
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    On a phone you go to their Timeline, tap on Friends, tap Edit Friend List and then Close Friends.

Reverting to Top Stories

No matter what type of Newsfeed you specify, realize that Top Stories is the default, and it will always return to that view. It is worthwhile then, to teach Facebook what is important to you. There are two main ways to do this:

  1. Mark the friends whose posts you want to “See First” by visiting their Timelines and clicking the box labeled “Following” and select See First.
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  2. Unfollow friends whose posts you don’t want to see. Since this does not Unfriend them, you can visit their Timeline manually to see their posts when you want, or re-follow them when the political season is over!
  3. Mark posts that you don’t want to see. In the upper right corner of every post is a drop-down arrow with your options:
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The more you mark the people and things you Do and Don’t want to see, the better your “Top Stories” feed will be.

To learn more about Facebook, as well as Twitter, LinkedIn, and more … See our What Does This Button Do? Episode #78: Social Media with Abby Stokes.
And, while you’re at it, be sure to mark your friend list as visible to only you so they can’t be copied and spammed. Here’s a tutorial video for members: 398. Facebook – Keeping Friends Private

Don’t Fall for Timeline Removal Scams

timelineby Jim Guld

Timeline is one of the latest changes in the ever-evolving world of Facebook. It is a new way to view your profile. It is different.

Every time change happens, a vocal segment of users wail and gnash their teeth, complaining that now they will be inconvenienced and their privacy will be compromised.

Whenever Facebook makes a change, scammers will try to capitalize on those resisting the changes, wanting to retain the "old way."

There are a couple "Timeline-removing" spam scams making the rounds on Facebook. They are targeting users who dislike the recently introduced feature and are looking for a way to go back to the old look. Users who take the bait are encouraged to install a browser plug-in that supposedly removes Facebook Timeline. Security experts are still unsure what the plug-in does, but advise against installing it.

Another application is called "Facebook Timeline Remover." This one does not install anything, Users are invited to complete a collection of surveys for suspicious marketing affiliates. Phishing. I always check Snopes.com for info on potential scams. They say it’s not as dangerous as the fear mongers might have you think, but it is still ill-advised to click on any link promising to get rid of Timeline. http://www.snopes.com/computer/virus/timeline.asp.

A Facebook spokesperson said, "Security is a top priority for Facebook, and we devote significant resources to helping people protect their accounts and information. We’ve built numerous defenses to combat phishing and malware, including complex automated systems that work behind the scenes … Security is an arms race, and our teams are always working to identify the next threat and build defenses for it."

Even if you could find a legitimate plugin that alters the look of your Facebook profile, you have just added another layer of complexity to your computer. Next time you have a problem with your Facebook profile, you won’t know if it’s Faceboook – or the plugin. Just don’t do it! Rather than fighting the change, we recommend taking some time to learn more about Timeline and Facebook in general. Here is Facebook’s Help page on Timeline. And, here’s is Geeks on Tour’s learning library page for Facebook – the first 3 videos are free for anyone, the rest require a paid membership.