Considering that Facebook has a user base of over one billion people, it contains some of the best kept secrets anywhere on the Web. Whether it’s nifty Easter eggs or useful functions that few people are aware of, it’s a much meatier Web platform that it appears to be on the surface. If you want to get more out of social networking, here are a few things you should know about.
1. Message Forwarding
Copying and pasting is a thing of the past. If you want to share messages, all you have to do is click the “Actions” button above the conversation and choose the “Forward” option. You’ll be able to click each individual message that you want to share, and you can add your own commentary if you’d like. Once you’re done, click the forward button at the top of the screen, enter the name of the friend you want to send the conversation to, and hit send. Your friend will receive a perfect copy of the conversation without any of the errors caused by excess code or text that’s picked up while copying and pasting.
2. Contact Lists
Considering how circles were such a well-liked feature on Google+, it was only a matter of time before Facebook implemented its own version. Contact lists allow you to separate people into different categories, and that makes it much easier to remember who is who and why they’re on your list. Perhaps the most useful benefit is that you can create custom news feeds for each group, so if you don’t want your family to see a post you made about a recent party then you can make it so that only your college friends can view the status.
3. See Your Profile as it Appears to Other People
It wasn’t that long ago where you had to sign out or log onto someone else’s account if you wanted to see what your profile looked like to everyone else. Now all you have to do is go to your profile and click the cog on the right side of the page. There’s an option labeled “View As,” and it’ll show you how your page appears to the public and your subscribers. You can also enter a friend’s name to see how it looks from their perspective.
4. College Specific Groups
Facebook started out as a service exclusively for people with a .edu e-mail address. While most of the perks that came with that have vanished since it was opened to the public, there are still college-specific groups, and Facebook will track them down automatically if you register an e-mail address associated with your school.
5. Controlling Posts You’re Tagged In
Facebook was never great with privacy, but they’ve been working to make up for that with new features that give users more control. The latest example enables users to control which posts show up in their timeline, so even if someone insists on tagging you in a horrible photo you can make sure that it’s never tied directly to your profile. This is, of course, found within the privacy settings, and it’s under “Timeline and Tagging.”
The Future of Facebook
Facebook is constantly evolving, and there’s no saying what the service will look like one or two years from today. New tricks and user protections will be implemented, and that means that even more useful functions will be available to users down the road. Make sure you keep up to date so that you don’t miss out on anything that will make your social networking experience easier and more secure.