Facebook lets you take the wheel on two big features. Here's how to use them

The social media giant has added new settings to help you customize your feed and community.

Alison DeNisco Rayome Managing Editor
Managing Editor Alison DeNisco Rayome joined CNET in 2019, and is a member of the Home team. She is a co-lead of the CNET Tips and We Do the Math series, and manages the Home Tips series, testing out new hacks for cooking, cleaning and tinkering with all of the gadgets and appliances in your house. Alison was previously an editor at TechRepublic.
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Alison DeNisco Rayome
3 min read

Facebook is giving you more control over what you see in your news feed, and who can comment on your posts.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Facebook is making it easier to control what you see when you browse the social media platform -- specifically, what appears in your news feed and who can comment on your posts, the company said in a blog post Wednesday. The changes give you more options for who and what you see in your news feed, and who can interact with the things you post. 

The updates let you customize your Facebook news feed, and give you the ability to choose friends whose posts you want to prioritize. You can also swap between the usual feed (which is determined by an algorithm) and one sorted chronologically, with the newest posts first. Finally, you'll be able to control who can comment on any public post from a menu of options, ranging from anyone to only the people or Pages you tag. 

Here's how to change up your Facebook settings to fine-tune the way the site works for you. 

How to control what you see on your Facebook news feed

Here's how to use Facebook's new settings, according to the Help Center

1. On your desktop, click the down arrow at the top-right corner of the screen. 

2. Select Settings and Privacy > News Feed Preferences

From there, you can select the following: 

  • Manage favorites, to choose the people and Pages you want to prioritize, which means their posts will appear higher in your news feed. Some friends and Pages are already prioritized based on information like your past interactions. You can add up to 30 friends and Pages to your favorites.
  • Unfollow, to select which people, Pages or groups you'd like to stop seeing posts from (though you'll still be their Facebook friend, like the Page or belong to the group). 
  • Reconnect, to refollow a person, Page or group you unfollowed in the past. 
  • Snooze, which lets you restart, stop or add more time to the people, Pages or groups that you "snoozed" for 30 days. 
Facebook social media network app on an iPhone

Customize your Facebook news feed with these new setting options. 

James Martin/CNET

How to see your news feed chronologically instead of based on Facebook's picks

To temporarily see the most recent posts in your Facebook news feed, go to your feed. On the left menu, click See More. Click Most Recent. To go back, just reload the page. 

This feature is available on desktop and Android devices right now, and will roll out to iOS devices in the coming weeks, according to Facebook.

Watch this: A preview of Facebook's new Oculus VR avatars

How to control who comments on your Facebook posts

To change who can comment on your public posts, do the following:

1. On desktop, click the down arrow in the top right corner of your Facebook page. 

2. Select Settings & Privacy > Settings. On the left menu, click Public Posts.

3. Go to Who Can Follow Me, and make sure Public is selected, not Friends. 

4. Next to Public Post Comments, click Edit, and select who is allowed to comment on your public posts: Public (everyone, even people who do not follow you), Friends (only your Facebook friends, those tagged in the post and their friends), Friends of Friends (all of your friends and all of their friends), 

You can also choose who can comment on individual public posts on your profile. Here's how:

1. Go to the public post on your profile, and click the three dot icon at the top right of the post.

2. Click Who can comment on your post? And select who is allowed to comment on this individual post: Public, Friends or Profiles and Pages you mention. If a profile or Page isn't in the selected comment audience, they won't see the Comment icon below the post, but they will see that you've limited who can comment on the post (this is similar to a Twitter feature). 

For more, check out six ways to secure your Facebook account, and how to stop Facebook from seeing your web activity