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Here’s How To (Very Politely) Remove People From Your Facebook Feed

A friendly PSA: You can block your slightly racist uncle without unfriending him.

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Loryn Brantz / BuzzFeed

It’s natural to want relief from the constant stream of online news, engagement announcements, baby updates, and the five-year-old memes your dad keeps posting. You may not be ready to unfriend your cousin who keeps sharing fake news (no, Vin Diesel is *not* relocating to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan), or your slightly racist uncle, but you can, at least, politely and — most importantly, discreetly — remove them (and/or the offending news site) from your News Feed.

To be clear: I am not suggesting that you block everyone who disagrees with you from your News Feed. That would only intensify the filter bubble/echo chamber Facebook’s algorithms have already created on your behalf. Every once in a while, though, it's nice to take a break. Here are a handful of simple ways to make your feed more manageable.

If you don’t want to see posts from certain individuals:

Nicole Nguyen / BuzzFeed News

You don’t have to deal with the dramz of unfriending them! Click that downward arrow, select Unfollow [Person’s Name], and — BOOM! — they're outta there. Forever. Until you follow them back. That’s it!

If you want to see more stuff from people and pages you actually like, generally:

Nicole Nguyen / BuzzFeed News

The "See First" feature is the best way to tell Facebook what you actually want look at in your News Feed. It’s also a great way to point the site’s algorithms to high-quality content from friends, public pages, and news organizations you trust.

From a desktop computer, you can mark someone as See First by going to their page and then to the bottom right corner of their cover photo. On mobile, from their profile, tap Following and then See First. You can mark a page (like BuzzFeed News’ or Beyoncé’s) by clicking on Following and then See First. You’re limited to 30 people or pages. And, no, they won’t be notified that you’re ~really into~ their posts.

Posts from those people or pages will appear first, before anything else in your News Feed. On desktop, manage these by going to your News Feed, and in the left column, hover your mouse over the ellipses next to News Feed and click Edit Preferences, then Prioritize Who to See First.

If you want to see posts from certain individuals…just less of them:

On any post, tap the downward arrow, select Hide Post. You should then see a small box after the hidden post is collapsed. Next, click See Less From [Person’s Name].

Ultimately, the best thing you can do for your feed is to use Hide Post liberally.

Nicole Nguyen / BuzzFeed News

If your reaction to a post is 🤔 , go ahead and hide it. Hide Post won’t block the person who posted the content or the source of the content itself, but it will help teach Facebook’s algorithm what you like and don’t like.

It might be worth reviewing the profile Facebook’s robot mind has compiled of what it thinks your interests are. The profile can be accessed here, in your ad preferences, and customized.

If you want to replace certain types of content (like TV show spoilers) with cute dog pics:

Rather is a free Chrome browser extension that identifies posts containing keywords you’ve entered (like “engaged,” “Coachella,” “my baby boy,” etc.) and replaces the post with photos from an Instagram tag (e.g., #DogsOfInstagram) or an RSS feed. The extension also lets you simply mute posts with those keywords, and it’s easy to unmute them when you’re ready to dive back in.

If you just want to nuke the whole thing:

The free News Feed Eradicator browser extension for Chrome will replace the entire feed with an inspirational quote. It will autopopulate a quote, or you can add your own.

Nicole Nguyen covers products and personal technology for BuzzFeed News and is based in San Francisco.

Contact Nicole Nguyen at nicole.nguyen@buzzfeed.com.

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