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Hoax Alert

Hoax Alert: Facebook NOT To Add 'Mute Until After Election' Button

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Wed, 23 Mar 2016 12:55:41 Z)

Wouldn't it be great to be able to shut up some of your more politically active friends on Facebook for a while, say until this whole presidential election thing is over and done with? Imagine a timeline free from blabbering Berniebots, tattering Trumpeteers, crusading Cruzophiles or clucking Clintonistas. If you believe the story put out by News Thump, Facebook engineers are actually working on making this a reality:

Recognising that everyone has at least one friend who is both utterly fixated and monomaniacally partisan, they have introduced the feature so you don't have to read Bernie Sanders memes every five fucking minutes.

Similarly, posts about Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump and some others who nobody has really heard of will no longer clutter up your feed, dramatically improving your quality of life at a stroke.

Engineers are also working on a system which will automatically replace text-on-a-picture posts with a cute gif of a baby rabbit falling off a bed, which will make everyone happier.

It would be nice indeed, but alas, it is not true: News Thump is a satirical news website and everything it writes should be taken with a (yuge!) grain of salt.


Still, today's hoax is tomorrow's actual Facebook feature, so who knows, maybe Facebook will one day actually develop this option as described. In the mean time, if you want to see fewer posts from than annoying uncle with the weird political views but you don't want to hurt his feelings by actually unfriending him, here's what you can do. Click the little 'V' looking icon in the top right corner of your uncle's post. It should open up a menu that looks like this:


Now simply click on the 'Unfollow' option, and you won't ever see a post from your crazy uncle again even though you are still marked as his friend. And if he ever asks why you haven't seen his latest and greatest Facebook update, simply blame it on 'Zuckerberg and his algorithm'. Guaranteed to work...

After the election is over you can simply go to your uncle's profile page to follow him again, if you want to.

About the author:

Maarten Schenk is our resident expert on fake news and hoax websites. He likes to go beyond just debunking trending fake news stories and is endlessly fascinated by the dazzling variety of psychological and technical tricks used by the people and networks who intentionally spread made-up things on the internet.  He can often be found at conferences and events about fake news, disinformation and fact checking when he is not in his office in Belgium monitoring and tracking the latest fake article to go viral.

Read more about or contact Maarten Schenk

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