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Product Recommendation: FB Purity

I mentioned before the stress and aggravation I get daily from people sharing their horrible politics on Facebook. It’s tempted me to quit the site before, but it would be sad for me to lose touch with all of my friends outside my immediate area just because some people post viral articles on God or grass or guns or gays or gender ad nauseum.

I recently found a solution in the form of the FB Purity add-on for Firefox (there are similar versions for other popular browsers as well as Opera). It allows you to fine-tune your Facebook settings in ways that (crucially) include an option not to show links or image macros. So I can hear about people’s moves and new children and interesting observations on life without having the entire blogosphere blasted at me. I can also turn off invitations to raise people’s imaginary cows and suggestions to join someone’s virtual Mafia. It’s a huge relief and for the first time I am finally starting to enjoy social media and consider using it more often.

So of course Facebook is trying to ban it and sue its creator. It’s kind of reassuring how consistently horrible Facebook is all the time. It’s like they looked at Google and their whole “don’t be evil” thing and thought “nah, that’s not for us.”

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10 Responses to Product Recommendation: FB Purity

  1. JJJ says:

    They need to make a version for Less Wrong. No more meta posts, half-baked solutions to Pascal’s Wager, orphaned links to SMBC comics, or armchair psychologists.

  2. Misha says:

    You really don’t need an app. Facebook has all these settings baked in already if you know how to use them. If you click the arrow next to someone’s post you’ll see an option to hide, and in that pulldown it’ll let you select what kinds of posts you can see from a person, or if they show up in your feed at all.

  3. Alex says:

    Wait a minute, did you read the comment thread? The story is a lot more balanced that Facebook being evil. In particular, the app used to be called Facebook purity, which facebook (understandably in my opinion) didn’t like.

  4. sixes_and_sevens says:

    You know what I’d like? Machine classification of Facebook content along axes that I care about. I quite enjoy some of the pictures my friends share. There are just specific families of Facebook post that annoy the ever-living piss out of me.

    Specifically, I would like to teach a machine to recognise:

    – Poorly constructed infographics
    – Schmaltzy / twee / power-of-positivity content (This is a remarkably coherent cluster in my head, and probably in most other people’s heads, but I find it very hard to define specifically)
    – Any photo with a politician’s face in

    I think knocking all three of those out would reduce my blood pressure drastically.

  5. Doug S. says:

    I like the politics stuff, myself… I’ve “liked” Huffington Post, for example.

  6. Deiseach says:

    What I would love is something to wipe off all the bloody “Hey, why don’t you friend these people?” suggestions and the “Why don’t you try looking for more friends?” notices.

    I’ve friended all those I want to friend, and I don’t need sixty different strangers gawping out at me, thanks all the same.

    Though speaking of which – shameless plug for my cousin’s venture into screen-writing: if you’re on Facebook and you see a thing called “Lord of Tears”, give it a like, please?