Sunday, September 5, 2010
I love having a wide and diverse base of friends. But that also means my Newsfeed is an eclectic mix of old friends I haven't seen in years, close friends and work friends -- along with more extraneous connections. I want to at least have the option of more streamlined channels that I can tune into for a more focused social experience. Otherwise I'm always in a crowd of jumbled relationships. Sometimes I want to be surrounded only by close friends. Other times, I want to see what my work connections are saying.
Friends lists also allow me to post to only these groups. And search allows me to see what my friends -- even my friends in a certain city -- are saying about, say, the Carolina Panthers while they're playing on a Sunday. So I can comment on their posts and take part in a real-time conversation about one thing.
How to create a friends list:
Click on the Facebook home page, then Friends, and you'll see a list of your friends with the option to "Create a List." Click that and add the friends for a "close friends" list. I do this instead of creating a family group, because I want my closest connections all on one "channel." When I sit down to Facebook, I can click this "channel" by clicking to the Home page, then clicking this list under Friends. Now I can see what the people most important to me are up to. As I said, I can also post to these people only.
How to post to a friends list:
Go to your profile, click the little lock under the status update box. Click "custom edit," then "these people," then type the name of your list: "close friends." Now your post will go out to only your closest connections.
I also like to have a work friends list that includes business pages I follow for work. I call this list "network me." I might not post to this work group, but clicking on it shows me what my colleagues are doing.
How to follow a real-time conversation:
To follow a "channel" than is a topic in real time, like the Panthers during a game, type the topic (Panthers) into the search field at the top of any Facebook page. Go down to the bottom "see more results," and click. On the new page, click "Posts by Friends." Now you see real-time results of what your friends are saying about the Panthers. You can comment and like, or reach out to a friend because of a post.
One last possibility for how to Tivo your Facebook. You can subscribe to SMS alerts of a certain person's posts -- so you get texts to your phone everytime they post. I find this creepy, but it might have its uses. Let's say your daughter is having a baby. You might subscribe to your son-in-law's posts for the days around the due date, so you know when the big event is going to happen.
Hope this helps. Next to privacy, focus is the most important part of my Facebook experience. Otherwise, it's just a jumble with lots of static.