When unfriending isn’t enough, here’s how to block someone on Facebook

how to block on facebook header
Brian Jackson/123RF
It should go without saying that, sometimes, people get on your nerves or creep you out on Facebook. Other times, it’s a friend who posts nothing you’re interested in. Luckily, Facebook has made it pretty easy to deal with these issues, giving you plenty of options to block unwanted people and content from showing up in your News Feed. Blocking someone is pretty extreme though, and may be a bit much in some situations. That’s why we’ll talk about some other options, too, in case you don’t want to block that person completely. Open Facebook on your desktop to get started!

Separate your real friends from your Facebook ones

Some of us are more apt to add people we’re not necessarily friends with in real life on Facebook than others. That presents a bit of a problem when it comes to privacy, however, as they see everything you post. Why not start limiting your so-called “acquaintances”?

acquaintancesTo do so, go to the person’s profile and click the Friends button located in the lower-right corner of their cover photo. From there, click Acquaintances. This friend will now be placed in a different group, one that’s separated from your main friend list. You’ll also notice that you can add the same person to other groups. We’ll leave that up to you if you decide to use it, but everyone should see the Acquaintances option immediately.

There’s just a bit more to set up after this. You’ll need to create a new privacy group for your post. The simplest way to do this is to click on the privacy button when you’re posting. From the drop-down menu, select More options and then Custom. A window will pop up. Look for the Don’t share with section, type “acquaintances,” and click Save Changes. You’ll now have a new privacy option, however, you’ll need to select More options to see it in the list while using a desktop computer.

acquaintances2

From here it takes a bit of diligence on your part. You’ll need to select or make sure Friends except acquaintances is selected before you post, as your post privacy settings will typically default to Friends.  If you forget to change this, your acquaintances will still see what you post.

Put them in a virtual corner with Unfollow

Maybe you’re just sick of seeing their posts — especially around election time or other hot-button events — but you still value them as a friend. Facebook provides you with an easy way to remain friends, but clear their content from your News Feed.

unfollowYou can do this one of two ways. The first way is to unfollow them directly from their posts. Each time an item posts to your News Feed, you should see a down arrow in the top right of the post. Click that, and then the Unfollow option from that resulting list. This hides all future posts from said individual.

If you’re in a rush, navigating directly to the profile you want to unfollow is another way to go to. To the right of the Friends button, you’ll see another that says Following. Click that and select Unfollow from the resulting list of options. If you decide to follow your friend again at a later time, you’ll need to come back to their profile page to do so. Facebook doesn’t offer a running list of who you’ve unfollowed, either, even if it does do so for who you’ve block.

Also, keep in mind that while you can’t see what they’re saying, those you unfollow can still see your content — that is, unless you’ve used our last suggestion or another method to restrict their access to your posts.

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Blocking a friend completely

If neither of the aforementioned options work, then blocking the individual in question is your best bet. This prevents a person from contacting or interacting with you in any way. On the flip side, it also blocks you from seeing anything they post as well.

blockFacebook does not give you the capability to block someone directly from your News Feed, however. You’ll need to visit the profile of the person you want to block in order to do it. Once there, look for a button with three dots located in the lower-right corner of their cover photo and click it. Click Block from the drop-down menu and confirm your decision. Once blocked, that person will also be removed as a friend. That means if you ever want to connect with them again, you’ll need to send them another friend request.

If you ever want to unblock someone, head to the main settings panel, accessible from the drop-down menu in the top-right corner of Facebook. From there, select Blocking and click the “x” beside the person you want to unblock within the Block users section. Here, you can also add users to your block list using either their name or email, which might be a quicker option if you have a lot of people to block at once.

Other types of blocks on Facebook

If you have a friend that seems to message you via Facebook Message way too much, or some other part of Facebook that is annoying, you might want to consider using the extensive blocking options within Facebook settings.

You can block certain Facebook users from contacting you via Messenger, for example, or block those annoying game or app invites on a per app basis. There’s also options for specific pages or event invites from certain friends. If you feel leery about a certain app having access to your private information, there’s even a block setting for that too.

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