I’m happy Facebook came up with a way to encourage more people to put their friends in lists.
If you know me, you know I’m a HUGE pusher of LISTS. Lists are the key to making Facebook work for you.
From the Facebook Blog:
To make lists incredibly easy and even more useful, we’re announcing three improvements:
- Smart lists – You’ll see smart lists that create themselves and stay up-to-date based on profile info your friends have in common with you–like your work, school, family and city.
- Close Friends and Acquaintances lists – You can see your best friends’ photos and posts in one place, and see less from people you’re not as close to.
- Better suggestions – You can add the right friends to your lists without a lot of effort.
You’ll start to see List Suggestions on the sidebar in various areas. If I pull up the “Most Recent” newsfeeds for one of my existing lists, Facebook now suggests people it thinks might be applicable additions to this list. With a click of the + I can add them.
“Look! There’s Joe Ferrara. I didn’t know he wasn’t on this list – I should add him.”
One click and it’s done! Joe is now on my new “super close friends” list. Automation is great, eh? Except in this case. (Joe passed away some time ago and as much as I miss him he doesn’t belong on this particular list)
It’s not perfect but it’s a start and kudos to Facebook for addressing this and making it easy for people to add friends to lists. Once we have lists we can start adjusting the privacy settings accordingly. But that also brings up the other side of Lists…
You know, that really nice guy from across town that is actually a competitor farming your neighborhood? Or that ultra radical and overly vocal political twit that is also a great source of referral business? Or how about that client who regularly posts R rated jokes or worse and cusses so hard she’d make Richard Pryor blush?
We might want to (or really need to) accept their friend requests BUT we also need to have a little control.
Facebook lives in a world of puppies, rainbows and unicorns. They don’t get the fact we have people like this in our lives and actually need to friend them.
So while you ‘one click’ your way to lists for all the shiny happy people in your life, you should also think about making lists for the dark side. You might want to put people in lists so that you can
- HIDE certain content from them (posts and profile items)
- NOT allow them to Tag you or check you into places
- NOT allow them to see your Friends
- NOT allow your other friends to see their interaction with you
Yes, I really do have a Scary People list as well as an Almost Blocked. It’s important to note that friends won’t know that you’ve put them into a list or what that list is named unless you make that list public. The default for lists is Private – something Facebook got right from the start.
These may be the most useful lists you have but they have to be built manually. Start building useful lists here: http://www.facebook.com/friends/edit/