Not your ordinary Facebook notifications

The mobile app of Facebook alerts me of notifications from my close friends, recent likes or comments, a possible friend request, and any event I just had the luxury of being invited to. The desktop app does the same thing, but in the background with a little red box just resting next to the one of three icons: friend requests, messages, all other notifications.

Facebook-3-icons_medium

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Having only three icons keeps all possible notifications organized and keeps things simple. Notifications are a complicated thing to handle and get right because there is so many functions that we would like updated on, but the timing and grouping along with any additional personal preferences still needs work.

Two things:

  1. Preferences over the frequency and timing per type of notification
  2. Providing notifications that act as smart reports for your own awareness and possible benefit

Notification Preferences

I understand the reason to keep the 'big three' in the notification center for overall platform unity and control, but preferences or settings can be made and adjusted.

Under the 'settings' or the 'down arrow' icon is the menu which holds 'using Facebook as', account and privacy settings, logout, and help. What's missing? Notification settings. They currently reside under account settings where you can only edit the type of notification that also gets emailed to you. Total lack of control or any flexibility.

Facebook-settings-menu_medium

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Facebook-notifications-email_medium

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I'd like to be able to control what days and times I prefer to be notified which would not only save all kinds of 'stress' by checking and pinging for any new notifications. Facebook could even come up with their own optimal setting according to your patterns because I'm sure they know some information in regards to the data they collect.

While some go bad sh*t crazy over privacy and data I suppose I'm more libertarian and see this act only improving my overall experience. By them keeping track of my patterns they would be pleasing me by offering the best times to notify me. Or they just might not be able to do this right now. Anyways, there should be settings were we are able to control how the notifications get sent to us.

You can either define a notification of being sent information all in real-time or just being sent information when you want to. Either way, Facebook lacks the later option as they only provide notification settings related to being emailed.

Smart Reports from the Facebook Team

Being the geek I am and an outlier amongst the Facebook user base I'd like to see news or updates of Facebook in my 'notification center'.

Even though I feel Facebook should do this, the majority of people using Facebook don't care. They just use it to use it and whatever happens happens. But there comes a point when I believe the Facebook team should notify us of information/data they know of that would benefit our experience and the overall quality of Facebook.

Smart reports consisting of:

  • Friends (people) that you haven't connected with in awhile and that you might feel the urge to connect more with
  • Suggested list of people to unfriend due to their lack of activity in terms of both their own timeline and any communication with your timeline (even though there is this)

These reports would strengthen the quality of the Facebook experience. Cleaning is good when management becomes tough.

Final Words

Facebook notifications need some work and these are the areas I would begin with them both appealing to the user and the overall platform.


Facebook's mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.

Improved notifications would certainly help.