Great piece by Mat Honan, with a proper and positive shout-out to Facebook’s filtering system. Many of us are drowning in “new stuff,” and most solutions—either walk away or follow less stuff—are way too binary. Part of the reason I like Facebook so much is that it does an increasingly good job of surfacing just the stuff you care about, and leaving the rest just a couple taps or clicks away if you actually do want to see it.
You also have tools to help teach Facebook and customize who and what you see. Are you really interested in most things a friend does, but the only photos they ever post are stupid Instagrams of their lunch? Ok, you don’t have to unfriend, just tell Facebook you don’t want to see their photos in News Feed (in fact, I think you can block their Instagram shots, specifically, but it’s been a while since I’ve had to do this). You can dial up and down the number of posts you see from each individual, from “only important,” to “most,” to “all.” That’s awesome.
This algorithmic filtering is a tool that more social networks, news outlets, and general services need. We’re all drowning in data, but shutting off each individual spigot is a far too heavy handed solution. We don’t need to cut those relationships, followers, and followees, we just need to temper them, like most things in life.