How To Trim Your Following List Without The Guilt

Time for a clear out?

Back when KISS first started, social media wasn’t as important as it is right now. But now, social media is a big part of our lives. When we wake up, our phones is the first thing we check and it’s the same when we’re hitting the hay at night. So, we’re kicking off #KISSSocial, where we’ll be chatting about all things social media. The good, the bad, and the meh.

Be honest your Snapchat list and Instagram following is jammers with people you don’t actually know. We’re talking about the people from primary school you haven’t talked to in years, or met once at the Gaeltacht, or even the people you have 37 mutual friends with but have never actually met in person. Aside from making you look popular, what do these so-called friends do for you, apart from clogging up your phone with photos and stories you couldn’t care less about? What’s more, do you really want all of these fake friends to have access all areas to your online life? As harsh as it sounds it’s time for a friend clear out. But hitting the ‘unfollow’ button can be nerve-wracking – what if they notice and ask you why you dumped them? That could be quite awkward, right? Not if you follow our guide to trimming your social media.

The not really a friend friend

We’ve all done it: accepted a random friend request from a girl you once knew from summer camp or your bestie’s french exchange partner. You don’t want to offend them right? Besides, if you dump them, they might be tipped off when your mutual friends comment on posts on Facebook they can no longer see. If you care enough that you want to stay on this person’s good side, but don’t want to know everything about them – including what they had for dinner -then you need to limit their spam. Simply click on their profile and uncheck ‘show in newsfeed’ in the drop-down ‘friends’ menu. If it’s on Insta use that handy mute button. Voila, no more silly status updates.

The total stranger

You accepted their friend request by mistake, out of intrigue or because you have mutual friends in common. Usually, de-friending straight away makes perfect sense. If in doubt, ask yourself, would you invite any of these strays into your house to see what you were up to? If the answer is no, then why let them peer into your life online. It’s just as intimate. Hit ‘de-friend’ or ‘unfollow’ and don’t second guess it.

The authority figure

From your mum’s best friend to your older cousin, there are certain friend requests that you feel forced to accept, even though it can feel like they’re invading your privacy slightly. It’s like trying to have a conversation with your friends with them in the room listening. This usually happens on Facebook. First off, if a friend request from an adult (say a teacher or a neighbour you don’t really know), don’t accept out of politeness. Instead, let your parents know this person’s online actions is making you feel uncomfortable. If you do feel compelled to keep an authority figure on your friends list (hello, Auntie Mary), you can restrict what they can see by adding them to your ‘restricted list’. This prevents them from viewing status updates and photos you only want your friends to see. Simply click on their profile, and click ‘restricted’ in the drop-down ‘friends’ menu. Goodbye sneaky spies.