Facebook Friends List Can Help Control Your News Feed

Use the Friends list to control who can see your posts

The Facebook friends list is a powerful tool that allows you to control who sees what you do on Facebook, as well as how much you see of each friend’s activity in your own news feed.

The Facebook friends list serves two basic functions:

  • It lets you decide which friends can see each status update you send.
  • It also lets you decide how much and what type of status updates and activity notices you want to see from each of your friends.

By default, the world’s largest social network creates a bunch of Facebook friend lists for you. These include ones for your close friends, acquaintances, and any work or college groups you may belong to on the network. You can also create custom lists, too.

Facebook Friends list

Why Facebook Lists Make Things Easier

One convenient thing about a friends list is that you can choose a setting for everyone on it with a single click. That saves you having to individually edit the display settings for each and every friend, one by one, in order to hide Facebook friends so their updates don't show on your news feed. Just add them to your list with people you feel similarly about.

Distant acquaintances might go on one list, for example, and long-lost childhood friends to another. Work colleagues could form one list, and friends who share a hobby with you could be another.

Control the Content of Your News Feed

At the very least, you should put all the people you don't want to hear much from onto a particular list. If you do that, then with one click you can change the setting for how often you want their updates to appear in your Facebook news feed.

Reach a Specific List of People

Having all of these people on a list together also allows you to selectively send a status update to a particular list and not have anyone else see it. First, put your best pals on your “close friends” list, and then when you sent the update you don't want anyone else to see, just select the "close friends" list from the publishing box and your note will only be sent to that list. To send posts to certain lists, select the dropdown menu to the left of the post button and select the list you want.

You can also do the reverse—block a list of friends from seeing a particular post. To do this, select the Block this list option when you send your update.

Adding People to a Facebook Friends List

Follow these steps to add a friend to any list:

  1. Hover over the name of the individual you would like to add to your list, then select the Friends button.

    Facebook Friends button
  2. Select Edit Friend List.

    Facebook Edit Friend List
  3. Choose which Friend List you would like the person to be included in. The default options are:

    • Close Friends
    • Restricted
    • Acquaintances
    Facebook Edit Friend List choose

Close Friends is a list that Facebook automatically creates based on how much you interact with people on the network. The Acquaintances list is not populated automatically; you have to manually add people to it. Add people to the Restricted list if you only wish to share with them when you've manually chosen to do so.

How to Create a Custom Facebook Friends List

Follow these steps to create a new list:

  1. From the main menu on the left, select Friend Lists.

    You may have to select See More to reveal the Friend List option.

    Facebook Friend list button
  2. This will take you to your page for managing your Facebook friends lists. Edit any list by selecting it.

    Facebook edit Friend List
  3. Select Create List to start a new list. A popup box will appear inviting you to give your list a name and start adding members. Begin typing in the Members box to reveal a list of friends to choose from.

    Facebook adding to lists
  4. Select Create when you are finished.

    You can always add more friends to a list after you've created it—either from the list's main page or by selecting an individual from within the News Feed.

How to Share Content With People in a Friend List.

Now when you post, you can set it so that only those included in a given list can see the post. To make a post for a specific list, do the following:

  1. On the News Feed, select the What's on your mind? box to create a new post.

    Facebook Create Post
  2. Write or create your post, then select the Friends button.

    Facebook select friends
  3. Scroll down and select Specific Friends.

    Facebook specific friends
  4. Begin typing the name of the Friend List with whom you would like to share the post. Select the List, then choose Save Changes.

    Facebook friend list share
  5. Once you are ready to publish, select Post, and your content will be shared with the Friend List of your choosing.

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