Friday, February 15, 2013

Blocking Facebook Game Alerts

Facebook can be a great way to stay in touch with friends or reconnect with old ones.  The only problem is, as your friends list grows, you're bound to start getting a plague of game notifications.  So and so wants a something or another in Whateverville.  Join your friend playing the newest Facebook game.  Hey, somebody just played this in that!  And soon you'll find your news feed is nothing more than a pile of game notifications with a random piece of actual news you want to read.  Hey, let's face it, those can be hard enough to find without all these crazy notifications, right?

There are several methods you can use to block Facebook game messages, but some of them still let certain messages through.  An example would be to turn off a friend's game notifications in your news feed (hover your mouse cursor over your friend's name, then hover over "Friends" button in the window that pops up, then click settings and uncheck "Games" from the list of your friend's activities that you'll be notified about.)  This can help, but I've found that apps can get around them by posting directly to your wall about your friend's activity.
Target the App Center...

The following method works very well, and blocks the app at its source.  I'm sure there are other ways to do this, but if you are having this issues, this will allow you to block all those piled up apps in quick succession.

Look near the bottom of the left hand menu and find the Apps section - the first item in the menu should be the App Center.  Click to go there.

Look for the requests link.
Once in the App Center, look again to the left menu.  The image to the left shows the menu in shortened form.  The Requests menu item is near the bottom again, and if you've never been here, it'll probably have a large number beside it indicating the number of game app requests you have active.  Click the Requests link and prepare to rid yourself of Facebook game spam!

Once you are in the Request section, all the apps with requests will be listed in the middle section.  Each app will have a "Play Now" button (just in case you wanted to change your mind and join in the fun everyone else is having) and an "X".  As they say, "X" marks the spot.  Click that and you're on your way to a cleaner news feed.  Of course they let you know which of your friends are playing each game in hopes you'll decide that if they play it, you should too.  Don't lose your resolve now, you're almost there!
"X" marks the spot...

Block your friend, or the app - it's up to you!
When you click the "X", the app gives you a couple choices - block the app itself, or disable notifications from just your friend.  If you are playing the game and just have an over-eager friend spamming your wall, you can just block that friend.  More likely, you'll want the whole nine yards and a full app block.  Click your option.  Don't worry, if you block an app and decide to play it later and want notifications, you can always unblock it.

You'll get the standard popup telling you what you did, and if it asks if you really really want to block the app, simply click yes, confirm, please, or whatever positive option they present you with.  Now is not the time to start second-guessing yourself.

Once you exit the pop-up boxes confirming your blocking of the app you'll hear William Wallace shout "Freedom!" and you'll see the App Request show that you will no longer see new requests from said app.  Ok, you'll have to provide the William Wallace yell in your own mind...  Use whatever inspires you most...  Do this for each app you have requests for and when you return to your news feed you'll find it has become a much quieter place.  Enjoy the silence.

Success!  No more messages from you, Mr. App!

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