Facebook announces big changes to comments and your News Feed

Facebook Changes
Facebook Changes (Image credit: Facebook)

What you need to know

  • Facebook is making big changes to comments and your News Feed
  • You'll now be able to control who can comment on your public posts.
  • It is also making it simpler to turn off the algorithm-based News Feed.

Facebook has today announced some big changes to leaving comments on posts, as well as at the algorithm-based News Feed most people see when they use the platform.

In a release the company announced that from today, it is introducing a new tool to let people choose who can comment on their public posts:

Today we're introducing a new tool to give you more control over what you share to News Feed by managing who can comment on your public posts. Now, you can control your commenting audience for a given public post by choosing from a menu of options ranging from anyone who can see the post to only the people and Pages you tag.

Facebook says this will help limit "unwanted interactions" and is available not just to regular users but also brands, creators, and public figures.

Facebook is also making it much easier to turn off the algorithmically-ranked News Feed, the default timeline setting for most people using the app. You can already switch from News Feed to a 'Most Recent' view, as well as a newer 'Favorites' option, and now this setting will be much easier to find:

The Feed Filter Bar offers easier access to Most Recent too, making it simpler to switch between an algorithmically-ranked News Feed and a feed sorted chronologically with the newest posts first. Android app users can access the Feed Filter Bar when they scroll up on News Feed. The same functionality will be available in the iOS app in the coming weeks. Regardless of how often you use them, you can find Most Recent and Favorites in the Shortcuts menu.

The feed filter is front and center at the top of your Facebook timeline, and will be available on iOS "in the coming weeks".

Facebook is also adding a new "Why am I seeing this" option to News Feed content. Think of the 'Why am I seeing this ad?" option, but for everything else. Tapping on posts from friends, Pages, or groups, will now show you why you might be seeing a certain post on your timeline, for instance, because of related engagement (liking a previous post), related topics (liking a topic), or your location.

The news will be welcomed by anyone who uses Facebook but would prefer not to have unsolicited or unwelcome comments on their posts, for example people they don't know. The move echoes changes made by Twitter regarding limiting who can reply to certain tweets, but will likely be more pertinent to people who manage larger pages. Like, the News Feed changes will make it much easier to see your Facebook time line in chronological order, rather than the order Facebook thinks you would like to see it in. You can read more about the changes here.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design. Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9