Tired of Junk Facebook Posts? This Setting Might Make a Difference

Tired of Junk Facebook Posts? This Setting Might Make a Difference

If you’re tired of seeing annoying posts in your Facebook Feed – such as clickbait articles, fake news, or disturbing images – there’s a simple solution. Facebook offers a set of “Reduce” settings that allow you to opt for less of this type of content in your Feed. However, most people are unaware that these controls exist.

Phone showing the Reduce low-quality content settings options for Facebook.

Found in your newsfeed preferences, the “Reduce” settings let you adjust the amount of content in your feed for four specific categories:

  • Low-quality content: This includes spammy posts, clickbait, and videos that loop or are only images.
  • Unoriginal content and problematic sharing: Posts from sources that share duplicate content or have a history of unoriginal posts.
  • Sensitive content: Sexually suggestive or graphically violent content, as well as posts from repeat violators of Facebook’s Community Standards.
  • Content reduced by fact-checking: Posts that have been flagged as false, impossible, or partly false by fact-checkers.

You can set Facebook to Reduce, Reduce More or Don’t Reduce for each category.

Facebook defaults to “Reduce” for all users, which should make it less likely you’ll encounter low-quality, unoriginal, sensitive, or false content in your Feed. Selecting “Reduce more” aims to filter out virtually all of these annoying posts. I highly recommend enabling “Reduce more.”

I expect no one wants low-quality content, fake news, and other types of disturbing content filling up their Feed. So, it’s not clear why Facebook didn’t make “Reduce more” the default setting. Perhaps they are taking a less aggressive approach because of past accusations of censorship. But these filters are aimed at reducing the spread of false information and removing annoying posts, not preventing access to legitimate news and information. And, of course, you don’t need to use them if your content interests lean towards the conspiratorial or spammy.

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You won’t find the Reduce options on the Facebook website. They’re only accessible through the Facebook mobile app’s settings menu. To get there, tap the Menu icon, then Privacy & Settings > Settings. Scroll down to the News Feed Preferences section and look for the “Reduce” settings.

To customize your Reduce preferences, tap into each category to make your selection. You can enable stronger filtering for certain categories while leaving others at the default or even turning them off. The key is choosing the combination that is right for you.

Take control of your Facebook experience: The Complete Guide to Facebook Privacy Settings

Testing how well this feature works is extremely difficult, since the algorithm that determines our Feed content is based on numerous factors and past interactions. However, any time I can make a few quick tweaks in my Facebook settings to potentially decrease the amount of low-value and false content shown in my Facebook Feed, I consider that a win.

[Image credit: Screenshot via Techlicious, mockup of phone via Canva]

For the past 20+ years, Techlicious founder Suzanne Kantra has been exploring and writing about the world’s most exciting and important science and technology issues. Prior to Techlicious, Suzanne was the Technology Editor for Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia and the Senior Technology Editor for Popular Science. Suzanne has been featured on CNN, CBS, and NBC.

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