Facebook will now help you win your breakup

Breaking up has never been harder than it is in the Internet age. And in recognition of this tragic and undisputed fact, Facebook, on Thursday, began testing a new tool to make it easier.

From now on, the company said in an announcement, users will have some additional privacy options when they change their relationship status to “single.” Among other things, you’ll be able to easily hide your ex’s posts from appearing in your News Feed in the future, and prevent Facebook from suggesting his or her name when you tag photos. The new tool will also make it simpler to limit what your ex sees about you after a breakup and to delete yourself from their posts and photos.

Alas, the new features — currently only available to mobile users in the United States — will not solve the other quandaries of singlehood, like how to get your stuff back from her apartment or what to do about your mutual friends. This will also have no effect on the greatest vexation of the Facebook breakup: namely, the network’s insistence that you “may know” your ex, long after you’ve unfriended him.

That handy feature is powered by the magic of network topology, a math/science in which Facebook uses all the information it knows about you to estimate blanks in its network. If you and Taylor aren’t friends on Facebook, but you still share a hometown, favorite bar and 84 mutual friends, Facebook may very well suggest that you friend Taylor again.

This feature, as we’ve written before, is not going anywhere; it’s in Facebook’s best interest to max out your number of friends. Besides, this new tool is for friendlier, more passive-aggressive breakups! The kind where you want to look really chill and over it … but actually don’t ever want to see your ex’s face again.

Talk to us

More in Local News

CORRECTS NAME OF CANDIDATE AT LEFT TO MAIA ESPINOZA INSTEAD OF OF MONICA MARCHETTI - Maia Espinoza, a candidate for Washington state superintendent of public instruction, is shown at left in an undated photo taken by Monica Marchetti and provided by her campaign. Espinoza is challenging incumbent state superintendent Chris Reykdal, right, shown in an AP photo taken Oct. 2, 2020, in Olympia, Wash., in the upcoming November election. (AP Photo)
COVID and sex education frame the state superintendent race

Maia Espinoza, 31, is challenging incumbent Chris Reykdal, 48. They are both parents — with divergent views.

People in dinosaur costumes greet each other during Downtown Trick-or-Treating on Oct. 31, 2019 in Everett, Wash. Health officials have discouraged trick-or-treating this year. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Halloween cloaked in caution, trick-or-treating discouraged

As Snohomish Health District offers tips for safer fun, some still plan to hand out candy to kids.

Firefighters rescued Bennett the cat from a chimney Sunday night. The cat was missing a week before someone heard him calling for help. Firefighters worked him out of the flue by hand. (Marysville Fire District)
Marysville firefighters rescue wayward cat from chimney

Bennett had been missing a week before a neighbor heard his meows coming from the fireplace.

The Arlington City Council will discuss asking voters to consider annexing its fire department to North County Fire & EMS. (North County Fire)
Arlington and North County Fire to consider annexation

If the Arlington City Council decides to move forward, voters would make the final decision.

Man shot while pumping gas in Everett

A man in his mid-40s refused another’s demand for his wallet. The victim was hospitalized.

Everett man arrested in Las Vegas for 2019 shooting

After the killing on Aurora Ave. in Seattle, the suspect relocated to several different states.

Rescuers find lost Marysville hunter near Leavenworth

They reached him over the radio, so they asked him to fire a round of his rifle to help locate him.

Brett Gailey
Lake Stevens’ first full-time mayor will make $80,000 a year

The city council voted in September to convert the mayoral position from part time to full time.

Cassandra Lopez-Shaw (left) and Robert Grant.
Lone local judge race: Defense attorney vs. deputy prosecutor

Cassandra Lopez-Shaw would be the county’s first Latina judge. Robert Grant is endorsed by retiring judge Eric Lucas.

Most Read