How to block TV spoilers on Facebook and Twitter

If you're a Chrome user, the Spoiler Shield extension will help you "stay safe" while staying active on social networks.

spoiler-shield-for-chrome.png
Sorry, social media, you're not going to ruin another show before I've had the chance to watch it. Screenshot by Rick Broida/CNET

What happened on "Game of Thrones" last night? I have no idea, because I haven't watched the episode yet. But Facebook and Twitter are definitely abuzz about it, which typically means I need to steer clear of both until I'm able to find a free hour.

Fortunately, because I'm a Google Chrome user, I can avoid TV spoilers courtesy of Spoiler Shield, an extension that filters out all mentions of selected shows. (There's also an app version for Android and iOS.)

Here's how to set it up and start using it -- hopefully before it's too late.

Step one: Install Spoiler Shield for Chrome.

spoiler-shield-icon.png
Screenshot by Rick Broida/CNET

Step two: Click the newly added Spoiler Shield icon in Chrome's button bar. (If you don't see any buttons, click the little double-arrow just to the right of the address bar, then click the Spoiler Shield icon.)

Step three: Click Facebook and/or Twitter to sign in, noting that you may have to grant permissions so Spoiler Shield can do its thing.

spoiler-shield-categories.png
Screenshot by Rick Broida/CNET

Step four: Click Set Shields, then click Television (or one of the sports categories if you want to avoid spoilers related to your favorite team).

spoiler-shield-shows.png
Screenshot by Rick Broida/CNET

Step five: Scroll through the list of shows and click the checkbox next to any you want Spoiler Shield to filter out of your feeds.

And that's it! Now you can enjoy a spoiler-free Facebook and Twitter experience. As you can see in the screenshot up top, Spoiler Shield doesn't actually remove related items, but instead covers them with a big, splashy banner. If you mouse over one, you'll see the option to reveal the post:

spoiler-shield-reveal.png
Screenshot by Rick Broida/CNET

One thing I did notice, however, is that it can take a second or two for the filtering to kick in, so if there happens to be a spoiler-y post at the top of your feed, you might accidentally get a glance at it.

Best practice, then, is to look away for a couple seconds while Facebook or Twitter loads. Then you should be in the clear.

 

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