Facebook has a multitude of serious problems, but on a day to day basis, the site’s fundamental problem is that it has vastly expanded the size of our emotional space, to the point where too often it rubs up against other people’s. And if you’re feeling the chafe, but don’t want to just outright shut off people, now you’ve got a third option.
Facebook is, according to TechCrunch, introducing a new “snooze” button. If your uncle starts sharing angry invective about the tax bill or your college roommate won’t stop ranting about Star Wars, you can hit snooze, and for thirty days, they won’t pop up in your feed. Here’s a cute video explaining it:
The emotional benefits of this new feature are obvious, to a point, although yet again it’ll raise the question of just who’s responsible for what we see. But at the same time, it’s nice to have a bit more control over what we see, and who it’s coming from. Facebook is useful, in a sense, because it forces us to confront issues we could gloss over before. Our relatives’ more unpopular or outright wrong opinions don’t cease to exist once you scoot away from them at the holiday gathering, after all. But that doesn’t mean we need to marinate in it, either. Sometimes, you need a break for your own mental health, and it appears that’s what Snooze is for.