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How to prioritize your Facebook news feed content

Kristin Burnham | Dec. 14, 2015
Facebook starts prompting users this week to select friends and pages whose content will display higher than everything else. Here’s how to use this tool to customize your news feed.

facebook newsfeed

If you have friends, family and Pages that matter more to you than others, a Facebook feature now widely available lets you prioritize their posts over everything else in your news feed. 

Starting this week, Facebook will show users a note at the top of their account prompting them to select friends and pages whose content will appear higher than other posts in their news feed. “We care about showing you posts from people who matter to you,” the note reads. “We’ve made new controls that allow you to prioritize friends and family in your news feed.”

facebook newsfeed priority

This feature is part of a series of steps that the social network guides you through to customize your news feed. Facebook says it added it “as a way to help prioritize stories and make sure people don’t miss posts from particular friends and pages.” This feature is opt-in; to dismiss it, tap or click the button in the top-right of the post and select “I don’t want to see this.” 

To prioritize friends and pages, select the “Pick Friends” link at the bottom of the notification. This sends you to a page where you can browse through your connections or search for people and pages by name. Tap their profile pictures to add them; the next time you refresh your news feed, these users’ posts will display at the top with a yellow star icon to indicate it’s a prioritized post. 

Facebook suggests three additional steps to tweak your news feed. Next, it prompts you to unfollow people to hide their posts. Unfollowing a user is different from unfriending them; the former maintains your Facebook friendship, but removes their posts from your news feed, while the latter severs all ties on Facebook.

facebook newsfeed customize
Facebook's newest newsfeed prioritization features are part of its ongoing attempt to show you more of what you care about, and less of what you don't.

The social network also asks you to reconnect with people you’ve unfollowed – a handy reminder of the people and pages you’ve removed from your news feed in the past. To re-follow them and add their content back to your news feed, select their name from the list. 

Finally, Facebook suggests that you “discover more pages that match your interests” from a preselected list, presumably based on your interests. You can skip this – and any of the other steps – by tapping Done in the top-right corner. 

To tweak any of your news feed settings later, find these same options on your mobile device by tapping the More button at the bottom > Settings > News Feed Preferences. On the desktop, hover over the News Feed option in the left-side menu, click the gear icon, then “Edit Preferences.” 

 

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