De-Cluttering FriendFeed

I like FriendFeed. I haven’t yet jumped headfirst into using it all the time, though. While wondering why, I realized the biggest reason was duplicate content.

I’ve already subscribed to most of my FriendFeed friends in some way over the past couple of years (be it their blog feed, Flickr stream, Twitter feed, etc.). So, a large amount of content in FriendFeed was stuff I’d seen before (or was about to see). However, the chief offender was Twitter.

Here’s how much of my friends’ content came from Twitter:

Twitter dominates my FriendFeed

And that’s nothing. About 75% of my own personal feed content is from Twitter.

I skim or read every single tweet from the people I follow. So, that meant for a LOT of duplicated content. Through FriendFeed’s Advanced Search feature, I stumbled upon the fact that you could filter the feed by service using a nicely hackable URL. If you enter, you get just my blog posts. Swap out “blog” and put in “flickr” and you get my photo stream. Swap in “twitter” and get my tweets. And so on.

I wondered how I could instead set my feed to show all services EXCEPT one… that one, of course, being Twitter. I was about to write to FriendFeed when I saw that someone else had asked the same question. I had assumed the “Hide” link under EVERY entry was to hide an individual entry. I never understood how helpful that would be. But it turns out, that link offers you a popup:

De-clutter your FriendFeed

There ya go. You can hide all the Twitter updates. They even let you decide if you want to show tweets that people have commented on/favorited. A nice touch. My feed is much more manageable now.

There are still a few things that are keeping me from replacing Google Reader with FriendFeed as my #1 source of feeds, but I’ll save those thoughts for another time.


  1. On May 12th, 2008 at 10:57 pm Scott McCracken said:

    Excellent tip, I definitely seeing this coming in handy. It’s amazing how much information I subject myself to on a daily basis, it’s amazing I retain anything at all. It makes sense to minimize the noise.

  2. On May 13th, 2008 at 8:07 am Will said:

    Thanks for the tip. I tried to figure out how to do this the other day, but I was never able to get it. FF could definitely use some a better help section.

  3. On May 24th, 2008 at 1:39 am Noah Carter said:

    Thanks again for answering my noob question in the FF FAQ Room by directing me here – excellent post (your site design here is excellent, btw. Ever thought of making it a theme?)

  4. On May 24th, 2008 at 6:08 am Adam Darowski said:

    Hi Noah… Thanks for the kind words. It actually already is a fully functioning theme. I never thought of releasing it that way. Perhaps if I do a redesign, I can keep this one alive that way. Thanks!

  5. On June 22nd, 2008 at 9:23 am Matt Gillooly said:

    Thanks! Saw this a while ago, when you first published it, but only today felt like I’d hit the critical mass of Twitter-FriendFeed overlap required to actually do something about it.