What Does it Mean When Your Friend on Facebook Is Hidden?

By Adrian Grahams

Hiding a friend on Facebook is a useful way of ignoring someone without removing her from your friends list or blocking her completely. The "Hide" option lets you reduce the number of updates you receive from the friend, or ignore her posts completely, without her realizing that you've hidden her updates from the news feed on your Facebook homepage.

Using the Hide/Unfollow Feature

Access the "Hide" tool by hovering your mouse over the down-arrow button at the top right corner of the updates and posts on your Facebook news feed. After selecting "Hide" from the pull-down menu, clicking the "Change what updates you get from [name]" link opens a menu of hide options. You can now choose to restrict updates by importance or post type; for example, hide all updates except the most important posts or hide everything except photos. To completely hide a friend from your news feed, select the "Unfollow" option at the bottom of the list. You can also unfollow someone by hovering your mouse over the "Friends" button on the person's Facebook timeline and unchecking the "Show in News Feed" option.

Affects of Hiding a Friend

After selecting the "Unfollow" option in the hide menu, none of your friends' posts will appear in the new feed on your homepage or in the news Ticker that appears in the pane on the right of the screen. This means you won't be able to view his links, photo or status updates from your homepage. However, you can still view this content from your friend's timeline page. Your own updates will continue to appear in his homepage news feed as long as he hasn't decided to hide you as well.

Messaging and Communication

Unlike blocking, hiding a friend doesn't affect your ability to communicate with her via Facebook Messages or Facebook Chat. You and your friend can still contact each other by sending a message or initiating a conversation in the Chat window. The comments the friend adds to your posts, photos and updates will also continue to appear on your Facebook timeline, and you will still be able to view your friends' posts, comments and updates in Facebook groups, pages and on the timeline pages of mutual friends.

Unhiding a Friend

If you have a change of heart and decide you want to see updates from the hidden friend in your news feed again, you can reverse the procedure easily. Go to your friend's timeline page, hover your mouse over the "Friends" button and then check the "Show in News Feed" option in the pull-down menu.