Ready or Not, Here They Come (Facebook Changes, That is!)

Technology/Innovation
September 23, 2011

Yes, Facebook just changed your feed this week AND it will be rolling out an even bigger change before the end of September.  Whatever you do, DON’T PANIC.  Here’s an overview of what you need to know (and how you can keep your feed looking the same if you really hate it).

An Overview of the Changes to Your NewsFeed

There’s been a lot of unhappy chatter online these last few days as people realized that their Facebook NewsFeed had been tweaked.  Funny how pissed we can get at a company for forcing us to change when the valuable product is FREE for our use!  :)  Yes, Facebook is the online app we love to hate.

So, two days ago your feed changed.  Here are 7 things you should take note of:

  1. Your Top Stories and Most Recent Stories are now combined into 1 feed (you had the choice of how you wanted to see it before, remember?)  Facebook decides what shows up based on who you interact with most and how much attention the post is getting.
  2. Pictures are bigger!
  3. You now have a live feed ticker in the upper right-hand corner that tells you those annoying things like who friended who and which book your sister likes.  Personally, I’m happy to have that stuff out of my feed, as I found it annoying.  But hey, if you enjoyed it, you still have the opportunity to see it!
  4. You can now subscribe to someone’s feed without being friends (if they allow it in their privacy settings).
  5. You can decide what percent of posts you want to see from friends (options include: All Updates, Most Updates, Important Updates Only).  By default, your current friends have been set up for Most Updates, so if you want to change this, you need to go into each person and update it).
  6. You can now ‘organize’ and ‘group’ your friends.  When you add a new friend, you get to identify if they are a close friend or acquaintance.  With close friends, FB automatically sets your post options to All Updates whereas with an acquaintance it sets it to Important Updates Only).  In addition, it looks for similar groups you share like College, Employer, etc and automatically creates a list that identifies them as part of that group.  All of these groups can be found under lists.  **Note: You can create your own lists and group people as you’d like as well.
  7. It now says your name in the upper right corner instead of profile.  It’s to help those with pages differentiate whether they’re logged in as themselves or their page.

How to Remove the New Live Ticker

If you hate the ticker like I do, remove it using these instructions.

How to Get Your Old Chronological Feed Back

  1. Go to your Newsfeed Page
  2. Click on lists on the left side
  3. Click on the Create Lists tabs on the right side at the top
  4. Make your new list Most Recent
  5. Add all your friends (this is a process, but worth it.)
  6. Click on that list each time you want to look at your Newsfeed updates and it will show your old feed.

**Note: Make sure you’ve gone through all your friends and changed the default settings as listed in #5 above.

Further Resources About the Feed Changes

A More In-depth Description of Changes

A Little Humor to Help you Cope

Part 2 of the Changes: Your New Profile

Yeah, I know that was a lot to take in.  Unfortunately, that’s just the half of it.  On Thursday, September 29th your profile will become a Timeline (see my photo above for an example of what it will look like).

Here’s a pretty video of Timeline courtesy of Facebook:

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hzPEPfJHfKU

And here’s a FULL PREVIEW of what your new profile will look like: https://www.facebook.com/about/timeline.  If you’re interested in getting your Timeline TODAY, you can click on the “Sign Me Up” button at the bottom of the page.  If that doesn’t work for some reason, you can access it as a developer in 8 easy steps by FOLLOWING THESE DIRECTIONS.  Or you can always just wait the 6 days for its full release!  **Note: You can only see my new Timeline if you activate your own early.

So What the Heck IS Timeline Anyways?

Timeline is basically an online scrapbook of your life, pulling in all your statuses, photos and online application usage.  You can now do lots more stuff within Facebook including: watching shows on Hulu, listening to songs on spotify and reading your favorite news application.  In addition, you’ll now know what your friends are watching, listening to and reading (and they’ll know the same in return).  Don’t want to share that much?  Then just don’t give the apps permission!

The new timeline changes aren’t as easy to describe, so I’m just going to refer you to this Mashable Overview.

**Note: Your timeline is only able to be seen by approved friends.

Honestly, I’m pretty excited about the changes.  Kinda cool to think that 30 years down the road I could look back on my timeline (or whatever it’s evolved into) and see a multi-media history of my life.  Yeah, it’s definitely a lot of information to put out there, but I feel like the benefit outweighs the privacy trade-off for me.  That being said, ABSOLUTELY make sure you’ve reviewed your privacy settings!

I’d love to hear what you love and hate about all the changes.  Let’s hear some chatter people!

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4 Comments

  1. naomi says:

    whoa nelly. this is A LOT to take in … but worth it if you want FB to really work FOR you and not against you. I just purged, so I’m feeling lighter in my step already …

    Will have to look into all of this soon! FB should be paying you for this blog post!

  2. Sarah Novak says:

    Yup, the key is to just take it a bit at a time. I’m actually feeling quite good about the new changes.

  3. Caroline says:

    Question about the Most Recent list…

    If I’m a fan of many business pages I’d like to see more of in my news feed. I’m missing a lot after these changes! Is there a way to ensure they will also be included in my “most recent” updates? Or are you unsure?

  4. Sarah Novak says:

    Yup, there’s a simple fix. You need to add the business pages into your list as well. Here’s how you do it:

    1. Go to your feed page.
    2. Click on your Most Recent list
    3. Click on the Manage List button in the upper right
    4. Click Add/Remove Friends
    5. Click on the Friends drop-down and change it to pages
    6. Go through and click every business page you want included in that list
    7. Click done!
    8. Note: Each time you add a new page you’ll have to manually add the page to the list

    Hope that helps! Sarah

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