Facebook Tip – Use Lists to target your updates

Facebook logoHere’s another Facebook tip for you.   In a previous entry I wrote about how to create lists of friends and then adjust privacy settings based on these lists.  Well I recently learned that you can also target a specific post, such as a status update, to a friends list.

Here’s an example.

Let’s say you want to use Facebook to ask friends where to get the best manicure in town. You could put the question in your status update, where all your friends, near and far, will see it in their news feeds and hopefully leave a comment with their recommendation. That’s okay but if you’re in Boston and most of your friends are in Wichita, they are not going to be able to give you the best advice.

So, target your update.

1. Type your status update (or upload photo, add link, etc) into the box but don’t click “Share” yet. Notice the lock icon.  Hover over and it will show you the default privacy setting for your Wall posts.  In this example it shows “Friends Only”.

Screenshot showing a status update and privacy setting in Facebook

2. Click on the little arrow next to the lock and you will be presented with a few more choices.  Choose “Customize“.

Screenshot showing how to customize privacy setting of Facebook post

3. This brings up the Custom Privacy dialog box.  You have a few choices on how to use this.  You can either specify who can see this (“Make this visible to”), who can’t see this (“Hide this From”) or both.  In this case I only want local friends to see this.  So for “Make this visible to” I’ll choose “Specific People”, then type the name of my “Locals” friends list.

Custom Privacy Settings in Facebook

I also want to hide this from my friend Bob (maybe Bob has a thing about nail polish or something so I don’t want him to know I’m asking about manicures).  So I’ll put his name under “Hide this from”.

4. Click Save Setting.  Now, you can click “Share” and only your Local friends (except that crazy Bob) will see your post in their feeds.

That’s it! Not too difficult to do once you have a few friends lists set up.  Now you can use them to adjust privacy settings of what you share, when you share it.

: You may not be able to use a newly created friends list for this purpose right away.  I learned this when trying to take these screen shots.  Try waiting a few days between creating the friends list and using the custom privacy settings on a post.

For more information: Friends Lists and Privacy on Facebook Help


One thought on “Facebook Tip – Use Lists to target your updates

  1. Pingback: Facebook Privacy Settings Updated | Deep Thoughts by Jean

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