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5 Types Of Facebook Updates To Avoid

As you might have noticed I am a firm believer in the power of social media, maybe even verging on evangelical. It’s existence has been brief  in the universal timeframe, so there have been no instructions handed down from ‘on high’ on 5 Types Of Facebook Updates To Avoidhow to best interact and play with this shiny new toy.

Governments have banned Facebook and Twitter, and some sovereign powers and groups even want to censor the ‘Net”.

We certainly didn’t receive instruction from our parents on the ‘Do’s and Dont’s’ of Facebook and that we should not be Facebooking while driving or after a relationship breakup.. you might find that engaging the brain before opening that status update box and emotionally typing could be the worst thing you have done in a long time.

We are still just working out that texting while drunk is not a healthy activity and sending  messages of ‘heartfelt honesty’ to your boss while inebriated during moments of  ‘Beer Goggle’ clarity at 2am on a Saturday night  is very likely to find you with a very clean desk on Monday morning.

There is no formal curriculum in high school on the moral issues of Facebook updates or what you should post on Twitter.

I have heard that the commandments on how often you should tweet are hidden in some secret vault in Siberia that only will be revealed when the time is right. In fact I and many others, I am sure, have been told  that we tweet to much. By the way, I have not yet told anyone that they don’t tweet enough.

So what are some of the types of updates and situations where we should be refraining rather than participating.

1. Incidental Happenings

This has to be one of the 7 wonders of  world that we as a species are prone to shout out and pronounce on Twitter or Facebook …  ‘just clipped my nails’ or ‘found a grey hair where it shouldn’t be’.

We don’t walk into the office and shout  out ‘I can’t believe it… I left a tissue in the washing last night’ unless you are looking for a demotion or some extended unexpected leave, maybe evolution is reversing and we are about to become extinct if we keep up this random behaviour. Charles Darwin would most probably roll over in his grave at Westminster Abbey if he heard about this latest update to the ‘Origin of the Species’

2. Inspirational Wisdom

It is very possible that the writer never applies the wisdom to their own lives but thinking they are the new Norman Vincent Peale and have decided to take up the mantle of  the ‘Transcendental Twitterer’ or Facebook Inspirational Guru.. everyone knows that they are just good at Googling or reading and are bored with watching TV.

5 Types Of Facebook Updates To Avoid


This shows the reader that the updater is  really good at copy and paste. It is not a sign of intelligence despite the fact it all their friends on Facebook give it a ‘like’ or a ‘thumbs up’

5 Types Of Facebook Updates To Avoid

4. Farmville Participation

‘It is cute to hear from a 5 year old that she needs help to find her ducks on Farmville but if your over 50 and male it just ‘isn’t right’.. just be thankful it can be turned off …but only  if you have the specialist skills developed at university to find it buried in Facebooks one million privacy and security settings.

5 Types Of Facebook Updates To Avoid

5. Inappropriate Information

Now this is one type of update that I am sure you have seen pass by your screen, where someone announces something like.. ‘I can’t believe that Lucy cheated on him‘.

Instead of using Facebook they should  just drop down to the local bar or Pub or maybe even a street corner on a busy afternoon, get out the megaphone and announce it to the passing crowd, at least that would be displaying some courage.

So I have a suggestion.. Facebook should have a special button called ‘Stupid and Innane Updates’ , ‘Drunk Updates’  or ‘Updates for when you are emotional’ and every night when we come home from work  we could log in hit the button and have a really good laugh.

What do you think ?

If you like the the T-Shirts “No-One Cares About Your Stupid Farm” you can find them at “TweetTees

Jeffbullas's Blog


  • THANK YOU! I would add Mafia Wars to the Farmville updates! At least these can be hidden on your facebook account. Simple go to the upper right corner of the update, “hide” will appear, click on it and you will have the option to hide postings by the author, or just to hide all Farmville (Mafia Wars) posting. Not so sure what to do with all of the inspirational quotes and day to day updates on Twitter.

  • Don’t forget the ones which are just a cry for attention. For example, “Just wondering . . .” or “I don’t know why people are so (mean, hateful, -fill in the blank-).

  • I agree with most of what you say. I get tired of all the game updates, the emotional stuff just doesn’t need to be there and most of us don’t want to see it and if you’re on here for business it’s just not professional. Though these people sometimes do need some encouragment from their friends so as long as it’s appropriate I’m OK with them. By cutting out all the “Incidental Happenings” you’re going to cut out 75% of facebook and take the quotes/insirational out and that’ll knock out another 15%. That’d leave only about 10% left and social media wouldn’t be very social at that point. But I agree we really don’t need to know everytime someone clips their nails and finds a grey hair.

  • Not only have you nailed the key irritations on facebook, you have also hit on a great business,

    Also you are on to a winner with selling those T-shirts !! Shown in the pic

  • Great article and makes a lot of sense. I’ll try to follow this guide. Thanks, Jeff 🙂 usually in Facebook, I just avoid commenting on negative statuses. Didn’t think much about the rest.

  • I concur, especially number five. Eventhough, let’s say most of the people in your FB page are really close friends, it still doesn’t take away the awkwardness of reading a what looks like a very private conversation/detail of their lives.

  • My personal dislikes are the posts that say “mmmmmmm….” or someting inane like that.

    I have to disagree on the quotes…not that they don’t require skill, cause I agree with you there…but that they don’t have any value. Sometimes words can be very powerful and a quote can open up a whole knew line of thinking.

    For example, a quote from Dr Jim Rohn opened up a whole new way of thinking for me. The quote was this: “Why not you? Why not now? Why do good things have to happen to other people?” This was a life changing quote for me, so I think the quotes can stay, but hey, let’s do it in moderation people. If that’s all you’re posting then what’s the point?

    I’d also like to mention the silly games on FB like the survey ones where someone gave their opinion on whether or not you’re a virgin…in my case, that’s a no brainer as I have four children!

    What I do think is important is the opportunity for people to connect, so I guess they have to do that in a way that they feel comfortable and if you were to take it out of cyberspace and bring it into everyday living we do share some pretty inane things in our day to day lives with those around us. When was the last time you commented on the food you’re eating, the clothes you’re wearing, the car you’re driving, the program you’ve been watching, the book you’re reading, the music you’re listening to, the itchy spot you can’t get to on your back… Ask your family and I think you’ll find they can vouch that we all say inane things EVERY day.

    Just some thoughts…

    • Monica Kriese

      I have to agree with Jacqueline Teo`s comment about quotes (inspirations too). I use them as my daily mantra and there isn`t a day that goes by that doesn`t open up some dialogue with my FB friends on their meaning and interpretation in their lives. I use the quotes as they apply to me and my friends know I often use a quote and then describe how it`s applying to me at that time.

      All of the other points that Jeff makes, I am in total agreeance with. Love the tee-shirts too!

  • agree with hayely on the quotes. sometimes i do stumble upon nice quotes that i really really really just got to share but i do admit that i overdo it sometimes since I want to keep my network of entrepreneurs motivated. i shall do it in moderation from now on. 🙂

  • Very amusing and relevant post. There is so much that people share on social networks that might well cause them problems in years to come. It’s a bit like sunburn in that way.

    I posted something similar recently but sepcific to Twitter.

  • Most updates I’m seeing are people being drama-queens. Well, life is hard, indeed, but let’s not take that up to public space.

    “Why do you leave me?”, “I don’t know what should I do without you…”, “I hate everyone in this world… no one I can’t trust”, “Why the world doesn’t give me chance”… those are just some from that kind of updates I prefer not to see in Facebook and Twitter.

  • I couldn’t disagree more with items 1-3. This information is perfectly fine to post to networks like Facebook and Twitter. If you choose not to consume streams which have these items, that’s what the unfollow/unfriend button is for.

    Sure, I’ll give you that #4 gets annoying, but only due to the quantity of these posts. Farmville posts are very relevant to the Facebook atmosphere, however if these updates out number the amount of your normal status updates about your life it can get annoying to people who really are interested in you and not only your app stats.

    Even with #5, this depends on your usage of your network. With Facebook, if you take care with your privacy settings and you are not sending this info out to the general public by mistake…say what you want. With Twitter, you can set your status updates to private so that you are saying intimate things to an intimate group of friends and family.

    The beauty of these systems is that you can use them however you would like. If you want to share nothing but whether or not you like certain restaurants around town everyday, that’s relevant to someone out there and it’s obviously working for you. And those people will choose to follow you.

    To be honest, these guidelines are better applied to corporate accounts, not personal accounts. I personally really enjoy seeing a range of status updates that allow me to know each person on a different level. I like that fact that I know that Maria in New York is an amazing designer who has a new puppy, just got a new boyfriend who snores really loud and she is grossed out by squishy foods. That’s the way I choose to use these networks so that’s the content I follow.

    As Hayley said “What I do think is important is the opportunity for people to connect, so I guess they have to do that in a way that they feel comfortable”.

    • Natalie

      I agree with Steven. It’s what I love about Facebook. If these kinds of posts annoyed me, I’d spend more time on a professional network like LinkedIn instead.

      I happen to love reading 1, 2, 3 and 5 and have just hidden 4 from view in my newsfeed, but am happy to know that they continue unabated, pleasing those that play those games.

      If any one particular person posts anything that bothers me, I just hide them too. You have control over what you see in your newsfeed or even if you spend time on Facebook at all. Use that choice.

  • A voice of reason! Nicely done!

  • You guys take this shit to serious if u don’t like it close ur account ! Bunch of fuckin winy bitches

  • I find Facebook postings interesting and outrageous at times, and for the most part, they do allow us to get to know people a bit more. But I wonder how many of these Facebookers realize that some of their posts border on the criminal. Come on Facebookers! Don’t admit to doing something that is not legal in your Facebook post–ie. drug use. You may find the cops knocking at your door in the middle of the night.

  • I completely agree with all points due to the sheer volume of posts related to your points. However I do believe Facebook is more of a social atmosphere with connections between friends and family rather than professional. Facebook is more intimate than all the other social networking sites so I believe it’s almost necessary to separate from the competition. I actually created a blog post about these “Facebook Trends” like Farmville and changing your profile picture due to social pressures located here

  • You invite them, they will come. You accept them – they’re yours. Don’t you kind of get what you ask for if you have a large community. Sure – I just don’t get the Farmville thing, but apparently a bunch of people do. Your personal FB page is – at least in my case – somewhat of a free-for-all but hey, that’s part of the deal with social networking – no? My defensive mechanism is to simply scan as effectively as I can without getting caught up on who needs a chicken or whatever. I also then click to my business page. Just part of the turf I guess.

  • I use to sing this same song then I realized WAIT-why was social sites created-to BE SOCIAL STUPID!

    Now, we have separate areas to talk business. Those who act like Facebook is their private website need to get a life. Go to your page and talk business. Profiles are for personal-read terms or service.

    I do agree there are some Social Media Manners that need to be learned online. Stop tagging everyone and their brother for your business opp. or auto DMing me when you never took time to have a conversation with me in the stream.

    I like reading the dribble in between the brilliant-it is what makes LIFE LIFE. If you are all work and not play you are pretty Fricking BORING.

    If one of your friends goes on a quotes rant just silence them for that time and all is well. I could care less if you think because I am feeling inspirational and I am giving out quotes as a lack of creativity because I am sharing something with copy and paste. I took time to look up specific types of quotes because that was the mood I was either in or needed to get out of and it helped others along the way. That’s like saying you didn’t write that song why are you singing it.

    I love ya Jeff and I use to agree with this line of thinking then I remembered HOLY SHIT BATMAN that’s limited thinking and I asked a better question “What if this is just part of life being well rounded and not all work and no play?” Social networking sites are not just for business they are for everyone. Unfollow/unfriend or SHUT UP. (she says with that sweet southern accent of course)

  • Mau Buchler likes this.

  • Social media is very much like public relations – done well it gets amazing publicity for the client and is not a quick lead generator. Done poorly by untrained people can really hurt a brand.

  • Donna

    Personally I don’t view Facebook as a business medium, that is what my Linked In account is for. In some cases, quotes have led to a great discussion, the little day to day updates have helped me get to know/ keep up with some distant relatives and friends that I don’t see in person often, or made me realize who to avoid… Point is, one person’s social interaction is another’s eye-roller. If there are ‘friends’ looking to utilize the site as a marketing vehicle for their latest MLM venture I will just hide their posts, this is my biggest Facebook irritant. I don’t friend people who are clients or business associates, and I tell them- unless you care about my cats and kids, don’t friend me. However, I do appreciate those few companies who utilize their Facebook presence to put a human face on their brand, and actually communicate information in updates that is interesting and relevant.

  • Ana Lucia Novak

    Hi Jeff, I agree with you on your points, except #2&3. I enjoy and am affected by inspirational quotes. I have posted Norman Vimcent Peale quotes on my FaceBook wall and uh that doesn’t make me less intelligent. ;). If anything when my brother was in the hospital fighting for his life, it was Norman Vincent Peale books that helped give me hope… I also want to comment that our FaceBook page is an extension of our personal lives, so sharing a bit of our personalities and values on our own personal page is a given. I agree that on a Facebook business page, to keep it more about adding value and professional. The rest is common sense. Just don’t accuse people of being leas intelligent because they post quotes on their wall! 🙂

  • Excellent post. I can’t for the life of me understand what the overwhelming interest in Farmville is. I hate th see those updates on my Facebook. As well, stupid quotes and words of encouragement on Twitter annoy me as well. Thar and ridiculous affiliate spammers who have cheesy websites and ideas of financial bliss.

  • Callidex

    The most annoying type for me (apart from repeated messages from applications shouting X got a Pig, why don’t you? ) is what I call the half-update, the obvious call for someone to say “whats the matter?”. These updates take the form of, “Well, that didn’t go well” or “Wasn’t expecting that!” or just simply, “Meh”. Frankly, these attention seekers do exactly the opposite for me, if you want me to talk to you, talk to me..

    Anyway, I’m fine, thank you 🙂

  • Great post.

    “The We Don’t Give a Hoot about your Farm” T-Shirts (paraphrasing here) are highly marketable. Start selling those babies if you haven’t already.

    Yes, in the wrong hands, inspirational quotes and mundane personal info. are buzz kills. However, there is a multitude of inspiration to be found in observation.

    Great writers write about the mundane.

  • Disagree with numbers 2 and 3. Taking a look down the nose approach to the social side of social networking misses the point. Social media provides another way for people to keep in touch with people, and to be able to offer support, encouragement and kindness when it is needed. Copying, pasting and sharing also initiate discussion, as do posting of specific questions. If people did not copy and paste and share information with their networks, many sites would go undetected (including all of the social media expert sites). The games are (to me) like a constant toothache, but using the blocking feature does help to minimize the pain (as does scrolling past the posts). Social media offers a mixed bag of information and opportunities to exchange and discuss, just like newspapers. You have to decide what you are/are not going to read/respond to.

  • Hi Jeff,

    It’s great to see that you find my work amusing, however, if you are going to pepper your post with my t-shirt design, it would be great to see them attributed appropriately with a link to my store. That’s how I ‘optimize my digital brand’.

    Thank you.

  • Love it! However…I must disagree with you just a little…quotes.
    Depending upon the line of work you are in, quotes are a great bonus to add
    to other content. On Facebook though I strongly suggest limiting to 2 or 3 a day.
    But who couldn’t use a dose of inspiration every 30 seconds while they are playing online?

    I am guilty of playing Farmville. I thought it was completely asinine (and still do LOL) but it’s addictive in some weird demented sort of way. But my Farmville friends are in a special list of their own and any updates go ONLY to that list! Someone else pointed out the Hide feature on your wall…click the X to remove a post and it will ask you if you want to Hide the poster, or the application. Once you ignore the application you should not receive any more invites or updates for it.

  • Great list – some of these apply to Twitter as well. As a social media marketing consultant, I seem to spend hours explaining that Facebook and Twitter are more than an update of where you are having coffee.

  • R.Lebeau

    Good List…you should add those people who make a status about deleting friends…just stfu and delete them if u deem it necessary!

  • Lame list!

    When people start making “rules” for social media it is the death of social media. I tend to agree with these suggestions, but seriously isn’t the idea to post what YOUR into not what is well received. But I’ve always been a non-conformist.

    If someone steps over the line of agreement with an individual then you simply unfolow/defriend or whatever; don’t blast someone’s interest because of what you want a social media outlet to be. To each their own.

  • I agree with some of the points here, but as another commenter mentioned, this knocks out a huge amount of the content that is on Facebook. If we are to avoid this type of stuff, then what type of stuff SHOULD we be posting on Facebook?

  • Nice post. It’s something to definitely consider, but I have to disagree with the idea that a quote is the wrong thing to update on FB. I would say it’s an exception to the rule. For example, I posted an update based on a meeting I had with a client of mine recently. I had never heard the phrase but I really liked it and mentioned the encounter along with the quote on FB. It was “”Do a great job and your client will tell 3 people. Do a lousy job and they’ll tell 25”.

    I believe it to be true so I shared it since I am big on customer service, it would make sense to my followers to see that kind of quote. I think when it’s random, you have a point, but when it really means something to you and the people who follow you, I think it’s appropriate. I really enjoyed your blog.

  • Now that I have laughed myself to tears……. I think this one made the top of my list of favorite Jeff Bullas posts!

    Looks like a T-Shirt business is in your creative future!

  • Wow nice article. See always we cannot get updates other than being president of a country. Most FB people regularly update with quotes, emotions and play farmville. Anyway I dont do all this 🙂

  • I want a t-shirt 🙂

  • I agree with a lot of what you say but not here I am afraid. I post to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn but I post differently to each one. Facebook is where my real “friends” are and I feel that I can say mostly what I want there. With that in mind I think it’s ok for people to do the first 4 points. With 1-3 I think it doesn’t matter what people say, it is good just to be reminded that they exist and it can prompt you into having a communication. I don’t get Farmville either but if people want to play it so let them. Just click the button to hide Famville. I agree with you on point 5. To summarise I think it is a bit unfair as to what people prescribe to others on Facebook and any site come to think of it.

  • Oh I don’t know. I think it’s a matter of opinion. I don’t mind an inspirational quote for fortitude once in a while.

    Farmville: I concur (wholeheartedly).

  • Grammardude

    Why is “no one” misspelled on the T-shirt?

  • Yeah Jeff, you are right. After reading it seams so Obvious, but before it was not always like that.
    Thanx a lot!

  • from a business perspective I’d agree with all the above yet from a personal perspective incidental tweets can often be quite entertaining albeit irrelevant

  • While I agree with most of your lists, I enjoy reading quotes and have often inspired others with positive thinking quotes. Ao I dont think that should be a Facebook page no-no. 😉

  • I agree with most of these, but would disagree with the “quotes” aversion. I don’t mind seeing a quote that inspires a friend. Yes, on the farmville thing, but at the end of the day a lot of people like doing it. I just block the app and I never see them.

  • I have to say that I appreciate the rant, but I disagree with most of this article. Quotes and inspirational things are what people want to read. The news is full of bad news, so why not head on over to your Facebook newsfeed and get a little juicy gossip about your friends or a little inspiration. What is considered too much to post – well, if you wouldn’t hold a press conference on it then it’s probably too personal for email, twitter, facebook or anything else. And as for Farmville, well, it’s true, people don’t care about FarmVille -except for their friends who are playing it. So, my advice is to either a) utilize lists for your gaming friends on FB, or b)hit the X in your newsfeed and choose to block that app or update your privacy settings and block those annoying apps.

    • Thanks for the insightful comment Tracy and the great tips. 🙂

  • I say NO RULES. If silly quotes about the incidental stuff that happens on your Mafia team is the highlight of your life, just know that Jeff isn’t going to follow you

  •  I’ve found quotes and inspirational wisdom posts to be quite popular, actually.  

  • I disagree. I will post a quote, lyric, something inspirational or something incidental if I want and if someone doesn’t want to follow me, they don’t have to!

  • Another bloody expert

    Nice post like the one about the quotes I see this a lot on Facebook and its anoying. 

  • I am with you on Farmville but maybe it is just my insane jealousy that other folks have the spare time to do that kind of thing 🙂  Also I love applicable quotes to the industry or that is relevant to life in general.  So I am joining your other commentors that the quotes have to stay.  And lastly, don’t do away the drunk tweets…those are so entertaining! Especially when photos are included.

  • Eleanor Jodway

    This is a funny little piece, isn’t it?  Firstly, because it describes 2/3 of all users.  And, secondly, because it’s really up to the individual user, how they use ANY Social Media Platform.  As long as they are within the parameters of the Rules set out by said Platform.   And in the writing of this post, You have become judge and jury of a whole host of people that You are not required to Follow or Friend.  Hmmmm….what is it You do on Twitter and FB?  Oh, Yes….I see…You’re an Internet Marketer.

  • I love the tshirt.  I also like the suggestion.  The special button for those updates should be kept from posting for 24 hours so when you get a chance to really think about it, you can decide whether you really want to share what you wrote with the world.

  • I love the tshirt.  I also like the suggestion.  The special button for those updates should be kept from posting for 24 hours so when you get a chance to really think about it, you can decide whether you really want to share what you wrote with the world.

  • I love the tshirt.  I also like the suggestion.  

    The special button for those updates should also keep it from posting for 24 hours so when you get a chance to really think about it, you can decide whether you really want to share what you wrote with the world.

  • I love the tshirt.  I also like the suggestion.  

    The special button for those updates should also keep it from posting for 24 hours so when you get a chance to really think about it, you can decide whether you really want to share what you wrote with the world.

  • I’m not sure what remains to post after your list. I couldn’t disagree with you more. Let people be who they are and share what they will. I’ll manage my feeds just as I manage my IRL interactions – spending time with whom and about what I choose.

  • Thomas2BHughes

    Your making rules when you don’t want others to. What’s all that about?

  • Wow, I couldn’t disagree more with this post.  Especially the quotes and wisdom.  So, you’re against people people motivated?  Wow.  Just wow.

    Why not mention when people vent to all their followers, when they should be venting at the one person that it’s REALLY directed to.

    or… when people constantly swear every other word?
    why would you be against something POSITIVE, and encouraging to others?

    I’m guessing you wrote this post for shock value, simply so you can gain traffic to your blog.    

  • I guess Jeff’s list can be summed up for facebook and life in general.  If you want friends don’t be boring.  If you don’t like this list you almost certainly are.

  • Sarawriter

    I would add a #6: Empty Home Announcements.
    It’s wonderful that you’re going on a two-month round-the-world vacation, but do you have to tell everyone that your house will be empty and unguarded for all that time? Please – wait ’til you get back safely, then post your pictures and adventures!

  • I appreciate your viewpoint and respectfully disagree regarding quotes. I usually post one a day from an author born on the current day and I’ve received very positive feedback. I’m a contract consultant at MSFT and when I go into campus I literally have people stop me in the hallway to tell me how much they enjoy reading my daily quotes. They associate me with something that is positive and inspirational which is exactly the impression I want to make on them as their business consultant.

  • Lynne

    Hilarious blog. I don’t mind the quotes. You are definitely right about drinking and fbing. Luckily for my kids if I have had a drink I tend to send them those personal messages on email. But I know the time is coming LOL O:)