Spare Yourself Potential Facebook Pain

The scribes at keep tight tabs on incremental changes in how Facebook (rumored in this newsroom as 'the new dot com') changes its interface. This week there were two worth surfacing: hiding the recent activity field and shortening tags in status updates.

The recent activity allows users to hide their comments, actions, likes and shares from other users. (Josh Constine goes into greater depth on this here.)

Users can choose to no longer announce their every move, with one click of a FB button. (Though, that is some of the fun, right?)

So if you don't want everyone to see your note to a friend like "How's the rash?" you can lock it down one action-type at a time from your profile page -- or you can cancel all activity updates. Say you want to remove only your comments from the field, there's a dropdown and confirmation box from Facebook. Pretty low bar, really.

The shortened status tags are also easy enough. Basically, you type a friend's name, hit the backspace key, and only the friend's first name appears in your status update, with a link to their profile.

The system used to require the @ symbol, according to allfacebook, but no longer. It also now notifies that friend that you've used their name in an update.

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