Facebook Inc. (FB) has recently brought upgrades to its News Feed that allow users to hide certain posts from particular people by using the gray arrow that is now found at the corner of each post. The new feature allows users to block each and every post from certain people, limiting the number of posts they see, or they can even choose to stop unfollow that person entirely.
The changes have already been made in the mobile and desktop versions of Facebook, and the following few weeks will see them integrated into Facebook’s apps as well. This modification is relatively small when one compares it to how the company decided to completely remove News Feed sliders in 2009.
When they opt to hide a post, a user will be required to answer certain questions about whether they would like to entirely unfollow posts from their friends and pages or simply see fewer posts. Users will also have the ability to track the post of people they follow as well as those that are in their unfollow list. Facebook has been very clear in explaining the new changes, as they made a video for better clarity.
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Greg Marra, Facebook’s product manager, recently revealed to BuzzFeed News that the company had been considering how to improve the qualitative features that people love about their News Feeds. He stated that they had come to the conclusion of allowing an unfollow option after having discussed with people and conducted surveys in reference to what users really like, compared to what they are seeing as well as how they are interacting with their News Feed.
Marra referred to the procedure as user experience research and stated that it involved the company deploying experts it had employed to observe users and learn how they engage with the product, as well as to dig deep and ask questions related to the aspects they understand and those they do not. This information is then given to the development team, which makes the necessary changes until such time as everyone is happy.
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Marra explained that the most important goal for the company is to create a product that is easy for people to use and understand, and that the company wants its users to have control, thereby delivering an experience they desire.