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Tracking News Feeds

Whenever you want to see what everyone else is up to, click Home on the navigation bar (the blue bar at the top of any Facebook page). The Home page, shown in Figure 6.7, displays the constantly updating stories, or live stream, that comprise the news feed about your friends and what they're up to on Facebook. You can read through the list and find out what's happening, view thumbnails of photos, and find out what silly quizzes they're taking or what applications they're using.

Figure 6.7

Figure 6.7 The Home page displays the news feed.

You can filter your news feed display using the filters on the top. For example, to view only the real-time status updates of your friends, click Most Recent. Click the Top News filter if you want Facebook to display a random collection of content.

You can choose to hide the stories from people you don't want to see. Move your mouse pointer over the story and look for a Hide link that appears in the upper-right corner of the story. Click it, and Facebook hides all the stories in the news feed from that particular person. To add them back in again, scroll to the bottom of the Home page and click the Edit Options link. This opens a dialog box that keeps track of people you've "hidden" from view. You can add a person back in again at any time.

You can also hide postings from applications in the same way. Just click the Hide link, and then click the application name.

Here are a few more things you can do with the news feed:

  • You can click a person's name in your news feed to immediately open the person's profile page.
  • You can add to the person's story by clicking the Comment link and adding a comment.
  • Rather than type up a comment, you can click the Like link in the story.
  • You can click a photo to open the album and view a larger picture.
  • You can click a link to view the associated web page.
  • You can click a video to view a video clip.
  • You can click a "take this quiz" or "vote on this poll" or similar link to participate in the same activity listed.
  • You can click an application link to add the listed application for yourself.
  • When you scroll to the bottom of the Home page, you can click the Older Posts link to view more stories.
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