Facebook is a great tool for reconnecting with old friends and making connections with co-workers and new friends outside of work. Sometimes, however, you might use Facebook to vent about your boss, express your opinions on controversial issues of the day or to dish on the latest family gossip, none of which you want known in the workplace. This begs the questions, can you control who sees various parts of your profile and, if so, how? When you accept someone as a friend on Facebook, do they need to know everything about you? Is there a way to have a friend but prevent your status updates from ending up in their feeds?
On Facebook, if you befriend someone by default they may see your status updates, profile information, wall posts and photos. If you want to control who sees what better, you must change your privacy settings and specify who you want to see what. The following is a guide to how to friend someone on Facebook without showing your status:
First, log into your Facebook account. In the upper right corner of your Facebook home page there is a link for accessing your Settings. When you click on this link, a drop down menu should appear that gives you three settings options. Select “Privacy Settings.”
Once you have selected privacy settings you will be taken to a screen with four options. You will see a link for Profile, Search, News Feed and Applications. Select the section for your Profile, as that is where control of your status updates resides.
After you click on the Profile section, you will see a menu with various options and drop down boxes. Scroll down until you see the section where you adjust the settings for Status Updates. You are given a couple of general settings such as Network and Friends. You are also given the chance to customize your settings.
In the Status Updates section select the ‘Customize’ option. At the top of the box that will come up, you can select general settings, such as allowing “Friends of Friends” to see your status updates. You also have the option, at the bottom, of allowing everybody “Except these people”. This option allows you to befriend someone without letting them see your status. Adjust the privacy settings at the top, then input the names of those you wish to have restricted access to your profile and no access to your status updates. As you type in the names a drop down menu may appear with options from your friend list. You can select from there, or continue typing out the name in full, making sure you spell it right.
Save the changes you made, and you are finished. If you wish to undo the restriction, or to add others to it, you can at any time by adding or removing names from the “Except these people” list.