The normalization of social networks has become so widespread that the relationships we have with people in them can no longer be categorized as “out of real life,” or whatever they might be underestimated before the Internet seizes everything. However, the rules do remain a bit different.
Stop following someone on Twitter or blocking you on Facebook would be the equivalent of telling someone in your face “I do not want to see you or hear you anymore.” Too rough, and yet, sometimes we feel like this with friends or family who are overly annoying. Luckily, Facebook has an option for you to limit the way great content that some people can see about you and you about them, without having to eliminate friendship and offend someone, or worse, block it and cause a drama.
I did not know until recently that such a function existed, because it only appears when you try to block a person on Facebook that is already your friend. For reasons I will not discuss here, I have blocked a huge amount of users in the social network, but I have never seen this option, because it does not appear if it is a “stranger.”
If a friend on Facebook causes you so much annoyance that you have already considered blocking it instead of betting on the most delicate “ Stop following ” option, the moment you press that button on your profile, Facebook will offer you another alternative: take a break.
Although it sounds like Ross’s favorite phrase in Friends, this “breath” is a feature of Facebook that allows you to see less content of a specific person and at the same time limit what that person sees about you. And best of all is that you will not even find out, unlike what would happen if you delete it from your friends list or block it.
The first option may limit the places where you see that friend. You can avoid that any publication of yours or in which you are tagged looks at your feed. You will no longer receive requests to send you messages or tag your photos.
The second option lets you limit what that friend sees. This is where the biggest difference comes in with just stop following, because if you choose “not show your posts” this person will be transferred to your restricted access list. This will have no effect if you go ahead and label it, or if what you are sharing is completely public, it should be “just friends”.
Finally you have an extra option. With this you can edit the status of your previous posts and those in which you were tagged. You can prevent your posts that are tagged from that unwanted friend from being visible to the rest of your friends, unless they are tagged in them. You can even erase all the content that has been mutually published on each other’s wall.
The whole process you can do it from the Facebook web or from the mobile applications, works the same. Happy break-up.