As the world’s biggest social network, Facebook offers its users unique, unprecedented opportunities to annoy the hell out of one another. Maybe it’s the uncle who no longer has to keep his terrible opinions contained to Thanksgiving dinner. Maybe it’s the friend you haven’t seen in years whose life surely can’t be that infuriatingly perfect, right? Maybe it’s all the jerks who believe it’s already fine to discuss The Last Jedi in detail.
Sometimes you just need a break, you know? Not a permanent separation, mind you — unfriending is the nuclear option, and not everyone deserves it — and straight-up unfollowing someone might, say, make for an awkward moment next Thanksgiving when your uncle has no idea why you haven’t seen all his great photos he took at the fishing competition. (That he just attended, to be clear, but he’s decidedly not clear about it.)
That’s more or less the thinking — maybe a bit less weirdly specific, we guess — behind the snooze notifications feature Facebook unveiled Friday. It gives users the options to no longer receive notifications from someone for 30 days, hopefully giving you enough time to remember why you wanted to hear from them in the first place. Absence makes the heart grow fonder and all that.
The tool is available in the drop-down menu in the top right corner of every post on your news feed. Here’s an entirely hypothetical example, in which I snooze Inverse colleague and space editor Rae Paoletta, which for my own safety I must stress is a thing I am not actually doing, would never do, and am only pretending to do here for illustrative purposes.
In its announcement, Facebook says users will be notified before the 30-day period comes to an end so they know they are about to start seeing that person’s notifications again. It’s possible to snooze people, pages, or groups, and those who get snoozed won’t actually know about it. You can also un-snooze people at any time.
This is, all things considered, a pretty good feature. That brings the total of good changes to social media sites introduced recently to… one. Well, it’s a start!