Most of us are on Facebook. It’s a great way to stay connected to our friends and family while the military moves across the globe. However, Facebook is notorious for changing information we are able to see and post. I wanted to share a few of the top Facebook tips I’ve learned:
1. Page Likes: If you’re one of the 3,600+ “likes” we have on Facebook, you may not be getting all our posts (or posts from other pages you like). Facebook is looking to make money from page owners to promote posts, so only 10% of our fans are receiving the updates on their wall page as a result. If you want to keep receiving posts, here’s what you need to do:
- OPEN USMC LIFE’S FACEBOOK PAGE, hover the mouse over the gear button, a pop up menu will come up. Click on “ADD TO THE INTEREST LISTS”. Doing so will assure that you continue getting posts from us and other pages you like (you will need to do this from a computer).
2. Facebook privacy. If you’re like me and don’t want your pictures and information being shown to anyone (public view), you can do a quick review to see what your status looks like. Click on your profile page (wall). Click on the gear and click “view as”… your page will transform into a public view page. I noticed that I had accidentally uploaded some pictures that I didn’t make private… I fixed this by clicking on the photo(s), clicking “edit” and changing the public view to friends only.
I’m extremely cautious about what I share because my spouse is still active duty. Anyone doing a Google search trying to locate active duty military personnel can find our Facebook accounts easily. I don’t want my children’s information and photos, address, or email out there for any one to see.
I also keep my information very vague on my page. I don’t have favorite quotes and other things listed. However, if you do, you can make sure it isn’t visible to the public by clicking on your wall, then “about”, then off to the side of each item click on “edit”. Click on the little globe, then click “friends” or your specific list. One last thing to mention, any of your “page likes” will be visible to the public; there’s no way to hide them.
Lastly, my husband and my account simply state “married” but we’re not linked to each other’s accounts for security reasons. The Marine Corps regularly puts promotion boards, articles and other information on their website that anyone can access. A simple Facebook search for your spouse can lead to you.
3. Apps 1.0: I rarely authorize apps to access my information, but I did a cleanup of ones I wasn’t utilizing any more. To view your apps, click on the down arrow next to home, then “account settings”. Then look at the left menu and click on “apps” and you can see which apps you’ve authorized. Click the “x” on the right hand side to delete and remove the apps.
4. Apps 2.0: Do you have friends who share your information when they install an app and you don’t know about it? Yes, you can control what info they are allowed to access. Click the down arrow once again (next to home), and this time click on “privacy settings”. Then click on “edit settings” under “ads, apps and websites”. Look for the “How people bring your info to apps they use” and click “edit settings”. This will enable you to remove all checked boxes to protect your privacy.
5. Create different lists: If you’re like me and want to exclude information from particular groups of people, it’s really easy to create lists. Facebook has now set up different categories for you based off people’s locations and groups, but I’ve created a simple way to manage my list. If you’re not in my “inside” circle, then you don’t see much of anything that the public can’t see. I like the ability to be connected to people as “friends”; especially those new acquaintances or pesky family members I don’t want viewing my information on a regular basis without having to “unfriend” them.
Here’s how to create your own list: Click on your wall (profile page) and look at the bottom of the left hand column, click on the “more” button.
Then your friends list will come up, but you will see another “more” off to the right.
Click on that and a new window will open up. Click on “create list”… I’ve named my inside but you can name it whatever you like. Then add friends or family to that list, or create more lists depending on what kind of information you want shared with whom.
Remember that each time you accept a friend request, you’ll need to add that friend to the list(s). Simply click on the individual’s wall, hover over the “friends” tab and a list of options will pop up. Note that “close friends” is already checked, but I want to go a step further because I’ve created my own list. I click on “add to another list” then I click on “inside”.
6. Tagging 1.0: Ever wonder how people tag one another in posts or pictures? You can always use the @ sign and then type the person’s name to tag them. For example, say I’m friends with Emily Jane Browning who loves Julia Child. I’ve uploaded a beautiful dessert photo and say “Eat your heart out @Emily Jane Browning. The original @Julia Child recipe turned out great!”, both tagging the individual and the page you’re referring to.
7. Tagging 2.0: Don’t want the world to see that unflattering photo you got tagged in, or have your boss view the happy hour party that turned into an all night rager? We’re going back to the arrow listed to the right of “Home” , then click on “privacy settings” then “timeline and tagging”, then click “edit settings”.
There you can ask to review posts and photos you’re tagged in before they go to your wall (very helpful for the friend who writes inappropriate things): simply turn this “on”. Then on the “who can see posts you’ve been tagged in” I’ve changed to “only me” if you want to limit everything.
While you’re there, you might want to change your automatic default setting for mobile uploads to the “inside” or custom default list.
8. Hide the Debbie Downers: Have a friend who is always complaining about their kids, their job, or how life is so unfair? You can simply hide their status updates from your wall without unfriending them. There are a couple things you can do. Click on their name so that their wall comes up. If you hover over the “friends” button, this list should populate. Remove the check mark from “show in news feed” if you want to hide them all together… but let’s say that you’d like to see their pictures. Then you click on the “settings link” and can select which kind of information you’d like to receive from them.
9. Block the frenemy: In a tiff with a family member or want to hide your information from your boss or former friend? You can put them in the restriction box. Please note, if you’ve created lists (#5 above) then this is another way to limit information. The restriction box is really easy. Click on the “add to anther list” shown above, then the restricted option will come up.
I’m sure this list will be outdated in few months or so, but if you set up most of these right away, facebook typically allows you to keep your settings as they advance through updates. What are your favorite tips and tricks for Facebook?
What a great summary for using facebook! Social media is such a powerful tool for mil spouses but it definitely requires some caution.