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Facebook Friend Lists

Facebook‘s Friend List feature is invaluable. It lets you create lists for different groups of friends: work, family, school, local, or just people you want to pay more (or less) attention to.

It’s easy to add or remove individual people from a friend list, but at first, there’s no obvious to way to make larger, bulk changes. That’s where the subtle, almost hidden, Select Multiple Friends link comes in. (It’s next to the “Add to List” text box where you can type in a person’s name to add to the friend list.)

It pops up a window that shows your friends visually, in a grid, and lets you click to add or remove them. The same interface is used for inviting people to events and groups, among other things. It’s even exposed to Facebook Apps as Fb:multi-friend-selector.

I particularly like that friend lists have their own RSS feeds for status updates. Sadly, friend lists don’t have RSS feeds any more. Try facebook-atom instead!

It’s not all sunshine and kittens, though. The News Feed Preferences page, which lets you control which people and stories show up on your home page and news feed, is missing out. Its “More/Less About These Friends” lists are in desperate need of friend list love!

Otherwise, friend lists are great, especially the RSS feeds. With those, I barely have to use Facebook itself at all!

P.S. Other sites have similar articles: How To Create Friend Lists on Facebook, Organise your friends with Facebook Friend Lists, and Facebook Friends selection custom component.

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4 thoughts on “Facebook Friend Lists

  1. whoa … thanks! I had no idea Facebook was working on such issues. Now I can spend even less time in the world of Facebook

  2. since i wrote this, facebook has drastically reduced their RSS feed presence. they now only officially support feeds for your notifications and your friends’ links, not status updates etc. :/

    fortunately, you can manually create feed URLs that still work, including for friend lists. thank god!

  3. Hey Ryan,

    I see you’re linking to slymarketing.com on this page which used to be owned by Jens-Petter Berget.

    slymarketing.com used to be a legit website but it has recently changed ownership and is now a spam domain – the article you’re linking to doesn’t even exist.

    I just thought I would let you know – please check for yourself.

    Many thanks, Fred

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