You know all those annoying “apps” that your friends use (FarmVille, Mafia Wars, Gift Creator etc) and end out showing up in your Facebook News Feed? This tutorial will show you how to use F.B Purity to clean up your Facebook News Feed by blocking those particular entries, plus much, much more.
Before you even get started I should explain this up front – you’ll need to be using Firefox, Safari or Google Chrome as your browser for this to work. IE users, unfortunately, won’t be able to use the software covered in this tutorial.
Firefox users – the addon you’ll want to install is Greasemonkey, which allows you to install scripts that alter the way web pages work and/or are displayed. There are thousands of amazing Greasemonkey scripts – F.B. Purity – the one we’ll be using in this tutorial – is just one of them. The Greasemonkey addon installs exactly the same way all other Firefox addons do – so you’ll need to restart your browser for Greasemonkey to finish installing.
If you need help installing Greasemonkey in Safari, see How to install Greasemonkey scripts in Safari. If you’re using Google Chrome, you don’t need to install Greasemonkey, it’s built in – you’re good to go.
- Now that you have the Greasemonkey addon installed for Firefox or Safari, head over to the F.B. Purity install page. From there select your browser and install the F.B. Purity script. The screenshot below illustrates what installing F.B. Purity would look like in Firefox.
- Now that you’ve installed the F.B. Purity script, sign in to Facebook. If you’re already signed in, refresh your browser. You’ll see a ‘new’ line above your News Feed.
In the example screenshot below, the F.B. Purity script “hid” 13 app “notifications” in my News Feed, and 25 “extra” notifications (more on that in a bit). Click the Show link next to the app entry.
- This will actually show you what F.B. Purity hid from your Facebook News Feed. In the example screenshot below, F.B. Purity hid 1 instance of the Brightkite app and 2 instances of the FrontierVille app – among others.
This is great – I really don’t care to see FrontierVille entries in my News Feed, because it’s not a Facebook app that I’m interested in. However, I do want to see Brightkite entries, because that’s an app that I am interested in. So, I clicked the Allow link that appears when I hovered over that section.
- A confirmation window will appear confirm that you want to allow (or “whitelist”) that app (in this case Brightkite). Click OK.
- And click OK on the second confirmation window. Now F.B. Purity knows not to block any Brightkite related entries in my News Feed – but will continue to block FrontierVille, because I didn’t whitelist it.
- F.B. Purity also blocks “extra” things from appearing in your News Feed. “Extra things” includes notifications such as “John Doe has changed their profile picture” and “John Doe is now friends with Jane Doe” etc. Click the Show link next to extra.
- Here you’ll see a list of things that the F.B. Purity script deemed “unimportant” enough not to display on your News Feed. However, if there are things that F.B. Purity blocks that you don’t want it to block, that’s easily fixable.
- Click the F.B. Purity link itself to open the preferences page.
- From here you can control every aspect of what F.B. Purity blocks and/or doesn’t block. Scroll down the Extra Stories List and place a check in the Hide box next to each entry you don’t want to appear on your Facebook News Feed. Depending on the number of extras that you decide to block, this can really clear all the “clutter” from your Facebook News Feed, leaving only important and/or interesting things.
You can also use the Custom Text Filter to hide things from showing up in your Facebook Feed that contain a specific word or phrase. So if you didn’t want to see anything about Justin Bieber, McDonalds or Phish, you would enter Justin Bieber, McDonands, Phish – each entry separated by a comma. When you’re done making all your changes, click Save and Close to save your F.B. Purity settings and return to Facebook.
- There’s one other great feature of F.B. Purity that I appreciate – the ability to hide the Suggestions, Sponsored and Get Connected windows on the right side of your Facebook Feed.
- To do so, click the F.B. Purity link at the top of your Facebook Feed and look for the More Options section. Place a check next to each of the windows/boxes you want to hide, and click the Save and Close button.
- Now those windows won’t appear on your Facebook Feed!
- I hope F.B. Purity and this tutorial have made your Facebook experience a bit better.