The Best Way To Filter Your Facebook Content: Friend Lists

Being a writer, I try to get as many Facebook friends as I can so I can self promote my articles and stories, but sometimes I don’t want to share everything to everyone that is on my Facebook page. For example, sometimes I may want to make a personal post about my private life that I only want close friends and family to see, or a post about something going on at work that I only want my co-workers to see. This logic also falls into my profile settings as well. I want everyone to be able to see where I am from, and my contact information (my website, email, ect…), but I only want real friends to see family photos and relationships. Well there is a very simple way to do this: Friend lists. On Facebook you can classify a group of people under 1 group. For example you could make a group called “family”, a group called “real friends”, a group called “co-workers”, and so on. It only takes a few minutes to do, and is very valuable in managing content.

How To Set Up Friend Lists

1. Once you are logged into Facebook, goto “Account” on the top, right side of your page and select “Edit Friends.”

2. At the top of the page, select “Create New List and key in what you want to call it (Co Workers for example).”

3. After you create your list, you will still be on the “Edit Friends” page. This page will list all of your friends. On the right of their name, each friend has the option called “Add To List.” You can click the drop down arrow and select the list you just made, or even create more lists from here. You can have friends in multiple lists. For example if you have a co-worker that is also a close friend, you can have him in both lists so he can see posts you make to your “Real Friends” list as well as your “Co-Workers” list. Also note: On the bottom right where you can click to see what friends are online, when you look at that now, it will have your friends sorted in the lists you put them in. You can drag and drop them to different lists from here as well.

How To Customize Your Profile

Now that you have your friends list set up, you can then goto your profile and specify what list can see what content of your profile. To do this, you will need to goto “Account” and select “Privacy Settings” this time.

When the first window comes up, select “Customize Settings”

For Posts By Me, I set the default to Friends Only meaning everyone on my friend list by default will see a post I make if I do not select a list. (I will explain how to post so only a specific list can see it by not having to change your default setting in a bit)

For the rest of my profile settings, I click the drop down arrow next to the item and select “Custom Edit.”

On this screen, select “Specific People” and then type in the name of your friend list. Now only people on this list can see the item you just edited. Also if there are specific people you want to block from seeing this item in your profile, you can key in their name where it says “Hide This From.”

How To Share Specific Posts With Specific Friend Lists

Finally we are at the part that I think we get the most value from Friend Lists, wall posts.

Lets say you want to remind your co-workers that there is a meeting next week, but all of your friends don’t need to see this. Start out by typing out your message. You will notice a lock next to the “Share” button. If you hover the mouse cursor over it, you will see it says “Friends” which is my default choice I have set up in my privacy settings. If you click the lock, you will get a menu. At this point you can make your post visible to everyone on Facebook by selecting everyone, you can make the post visible to your friends and your friends’ friends as well, but to post to a specific list you have set up, select “Customize.”

You will then get a window labeled “Custom Privacy.” Select specific people, then type in the name of the friend list you made and click “Save setting.” Note if you want to change this to your default for all of your wall posts, you can select the check box “Make this my default setting.”

Hopefully I have made this easy to understand. I myself find this very valuable when it comes to sharing content on multiple levels. If you have any questions about this that I may have made confusing in this article, please don’t hesitate to contact me.