After a certain period of time, Facebook notifications may take over your life. There are so many updates and so much of noise from groups, applications, Questions, games, events, comments, likes and other activities that often you find yourself lost in a fray of updates and only updates. If you live and breathe the internet, these notifications can be a real time killer and distract you from work. That’s certainly not cool and the purpose of social networking.
The biggest problem of real time notifications in Facebook is its oscillating nature, which sort of comes back to you even if you’re not interacting. “Mr X also commented on a post you commented” – I have forgotten the original post but Facebook notifications seem to come back whenever someone (whom I don’t even know) interacts with the same post.
Thankfully, this is going to change as users will soon be able to mute notifications directly from the Facebook notification drop down menu. Yesterday, Facebook announced on its developer blog that the social network will introduce easier notification controls for applications, groups and other sources. Now users will be able to mute or unsubscribe from a notification “type” directly from the notification drop down, an example is shown below:
Clicking the small hover on “cross” on the extreme right of a notification will pull in an option menu where you can choose to Turn off all notifications from a specific app, group, photo or choose to mute an entire activity until eternity. Additionally, you can choose to report the app as spam or undo your last action.
This is going to save a good amount of time; you can now block applications on the fly, without having to visit your notification settings page or manually block spammy apps from your Facebook news feed. This change also make it super easy to unsubscribe from comment and like notifications, without having to visit the actual post, find the tiny “unfollow” link and be done with it. I have a separate friend list for my “noisy” Facebook friends who post every half an hour so these new controls will keep the notifications bar neat and clean.
The newer controls are currently web only and not available for Facebook for mobile. Moreover, application developers will be able to track the opt-out rates for their applications from Facebook insights dashboard.