Sunday, June 7, 2009

FriendFeed Concepts

Image representing FriendFeed as depicted in C...

Some of the key concepts in FriendFeed are:
Feeds are atom/rss feeds that a user subscribes to in FriendFeed
Friends are people whose feeds you have subscribed to
Entries are items that you have posted to FriendFeed.
Comments are notes that have been entered about an entry
Links are links to entries
Likes are ways to vote for entries
Groups are feeds with multiple contributors.
 

  friendfeed

  A detail FF help is located at http://friendfeed.com/about/help
What is FriendFeed? FriendFeed is a service that makes it easy to share with friends online. It offers a fun and interactive way to discover and discuss information among friends.

You get a customized feed made up of the content that your friends shared—from photos to interesting links and videos to messages just for you. And your friends get their customized feeds, full of the cool stuff that you've shared.

What are groups?

A group is just another feed, but multiple people can contribute to its contents. Think of it as a mini FriendFeed for a particular subject or group of people. Everyone in the group can share stuff with each other and leave comments that others in the group can see.

Your FriendFeed subscriptions include the Groups you're a part of. There's no limit to the number of groups you can join or create. As a group owner, you can manage the group's settings and membership, and invite new people to your group, even if they're not FriendFeed users yet. And when you use the FriendFeed bookmarklet, to share anything from the web, you can also specify whether to share it on your feed, or just to a particular group.

When creating a new group, you can choose between having a private group, a public group, or a "standard feed", which is just like other public feeds in FriendFeed, except they can have multiple authors.

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See the Help and FAQ

Is FriendFeed free?

Yep, it's totally free. Sometimes we can't believe it either.

I just signed up. What do I do now?

Welcome! FriendFeed is all about sharing, so you should check out if your friends are already sharing things on FriendFeed. It's easy to find and subscribe to your friends (and we even offer some recommended ones).

Once you're subscribed to someone, you'll see their updates and shared items. As you take a look at their items, click "Like" if you like something. If you find an interesting conversation, click "Comment" and leave your thoughts.

As you subscribe to your friends, they'll be notified that you've joined FriendFeed. Share your own stuff with them by using the text box at the top of your feed.

If you're having any trouble, ask your questions in FriendFeed Feedback.

If all else fails, ask your friends by going here and then clicking "Post".

Can I choose who sees the things I share?

Anyone who is subscribed to you can see and comment on the things you share to your feed. You can designate your feed as either public or private, and you can change your preferences by clicking on "settings". If your FriendFeed is private, you approve every subscription request for your feed, and your stuff will not be visible to anyone other than your approved friends. If you choose to make your FriendFeed public, anyone can subscribe to you without requiring approval.

Even if you have a public feed, you can still share private direct messages with friends and groups. And you can create private groups as well, for sharing with specific people.

How do I find and subscribe to my friends' feeds?

We offer many ways to find your friends on FriendFeed. We show these options to you when you're first signing up on FriendFeed, but you can always access them by clicking on "Friends" in the green "Friends" box and then the "Find/invite friends" link.

You can find your friends by searching for their name or email address. We also offer some recommended friends—users who are popular among your existing friends on FriendFeed. Once you find someone on FriendFeed you'd like to subscribe to, go directly to their feed and click either "Subscribe" or "Request a subscription" (if they have a private feed).

You can also find and bulk-subscribe to friends who are already using FriendFeed by importing your contactsfrom other services, including Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, Yahoo! Mail and Hotmail.

How do I invite more friends to use FriendFeed?
  1. Click on "Friends" in the green "Friends" box
  2. Click the "Find/invite friends" link
  3. Click "Email invitations"
  4. Enter the emails of the people you want to invite. You can also include a personal message.
  5. Click "Send invitations"
How do I connect FriendFeed with my Facebook account?

You can connect your Facebook account to your FriendFeed account by adding the FriendFeed Facebook application. You will be automatically subscribed to your Facebook friends who are already using FriendFeed, and your friends on the two services will continue to be kept in sync. The app will also put your FriendFeed on your Facebook profile and in your mini-feed.

How do I add a service to my FriendFeed?

FriendFeed can automatically pull in the things you've shared from over 50 services across the web, including Twitter and Flickr. To do so:

  1. Click on the "settings" link in the top right corner
  2. Click "add/edit" next to "Services"
  3. Pick a service or expand the list to see all the services that FriendFeed supports
  4. Clicking on any service will bring up the specific requirements FriendFeed needs (e.g., username, email address) in order to import your stuff from that service

Your stuff should show up in your FriendFeed almost immediately. If the service you want to add is not one of the ones we currently support, you can still add it as a "Blog" or "Custom RSS/Atom", as long as it has a per-user RSS or Atom feed.

What are subscription and invitation requests?

If someone invites you to join a group or they request a subscription to your private feed or group, you'll see a notification at the top of your feed. Clicking on the request will take you to a page where you can approve or ignore the request.

What are groups?

A group is just another feed, but multiple people can contribute to its contents. Think of it as a mini FriendFeed for a particular subject or group of people. Everyone in the group can share stuff with each other and leave comments that others in the group can see.

Your FriendFeed subscriptions include the Groups you're a part of. There's no limit to the number of groups you can join or create. As a group owner, you can manage the group's settings and membership, and invite new people to your group, even if they're not FriendFeed users yet. And when you use the FriendFeed bookmarklet, to share anything from the web, you can also specify whether to share it on your feed, or just to a particular group.

When creating a new group, you can choose between having a private group, a public group, or a "standard feed", which is just like other public feeds in FriendFeed, except they can have multiple authors.

How do I find groups to join?

Click on "Groups" in the orange "Groups" box and then the "Find groups" link.

You can find public groups on a certain topic by searching for the name. We also offer some groups that are popular among your FriendFeed friends and among all FriendFeed users. Once you find a group you'd like to subscribe to, navigate directly to that feed and click "Subscribe".

How do I create my own groups?
  1. Click on "Groups" in the orange "Groups" box
  2. Click the "Create a group" link
  3. Choose a name and username for your group
  4. Decide whether you want your group to be private, public or "standard"
  5. Once you've created your group, you can add a picture, description, and services, and invite others to join
What are friend lists?

Friend lists help you organize your subscriptions. For example, you can create one for the friends you're subscribed to, and one for the interesting bloggers you follow, so you can see their updates separately.

By default, we've created three Friend lists for you (Personal, Professional, and Favorites), but you can change their names, delete these and create new ones.

Using FriendFeed

Posting
How do I post something on FriendFeed?

Just start typing your message in the text box and click the "Post" button. You can also add photos to your post. By default, your message gets posted to your feed, but you can post your message somewhere else by removing "My feed" and typing the name of a different feed in the "To:" box. You can even post the same message to your feed and any other feed or group you're subscribed to at the same time.

Can I post something directly from a web page that I'm viewing?

Add the FriendFeed bookmarklet to your browser toolbar and you'll be able to share any web page to your FriendFeed with just a couple of clicks. You can even attach thumbnails of images from the pages you share, and choose whether you want to share something to your main feed, or directly to one of your groups.

How do I reshare something?

You can reshare any item in FriendFeed—including your own entries—by clicking on the "Share" link beneath that entry. Doing so pulls up a dialog box that looks similar to the FriendFeed bookmarklet. You can edit the text of the entry, and choose whether you want to share something to your main feed, or directly to one of your groups.

From this dialog, you can also access the permalink and shortened URL for the entry. You can also copy the embed code into your website to display a realtime view of comments and likes.

There are also links at the bottom of the dialog so you can share this entry directly to another one of your services, such as Digg or del.icio.us.

How do I edit an entry after I've posted it?

Click on the "Edit" dropdown beneath the entry. You can edit an entry's title by selecting "Edit this entry". If there are comments on your entry, you can also delete specific comments by selecting "Moderate comments".

How do I send a direct message?

Just start typing the name in the "To:" box. You can send direct messages to multiple people at the same time. Everyone in the "To" box will be able to see and comment on that entry. Make sure you've deleted "My feed" in the "To:" box to ensure that a direct message is sent only to the intended recipients.

You can also direct message a user by hovering over their name in FriendFeed and clicking on the "Direct message" link that appears on the bottom right corner of their profile card. Right now, you can only send direct messages to people who are subscribed to you. If someone is not subscribed to you, this link will not appear on the card.

How do I delete some of my entries?

If you just want to delete one of your entries, click on the "Edit" dropdown beneath the entry and select the "Delete this entry" option. After an entry is deleted, an "Undo" link will appear until the page is refreshed.

To remove all the entries from a particular service:

  1. Click on the "settings" link in the top right corner
  2. Click "add/edit" next to "Services"
  3. Select the service you want to delete from the list of "My Services"
  4. Click the "Remove account" button
  5. Check off the "Also delete imported entries" checkbox and click the "Remove" button
How do I publish entries from my feed to other sites like Twitter and Facebook?

Whenever you're posting a message or a link using the text box at the top of your feed, there is a check box to "Cc:" Twitter. If you check this option, you will be asked to log in to your Twitter account. After that, you can choose on a per-post level to have your post show up on both your FriendFeed and your Twitter accounts.

You can also configure additional options for publishing to Twitter—such as also publishing your comments or updates from other services automatically.

For Facebook, you can add the FriendFeed Facebook application. The app will put your FriendFeed on your Facebook profile and in your mini-feed. You will also be automatically subscribed to your Facebook friends who are already using FriendFeed, and your friends on the two services will continue to be kept in sync.

What are the options for the different kinds of feeds that I can create?

A group is just another feed, but multiple people can contribute to its contents. When creating a new group, you can choose between having a private group, a public group, or a standard feed.

A private group can be ideal for private sharing among collaborators, such as coworkers or a family planning a trip. You can also use these types of feeds for things you're following that you don't want displayed publicly in your list of subscriptions, such as an RSS feed of Amazon.com deal alerts. Private group feeds also don't show up in any public searches.

In public groups, anyone can post messages or comment. They show up in public searches and they're ideal for topics that you want to discuss with anyone, such as basketball or politics. They're also great for events, such as Macworld Keynotes.

Standard feeds are just like other public feeds in FriendFeed, except they can have multiple authors. They're publicly searchable. An organization can use them to publish their stories or press releases, and a user can create one that's about a specific topic that they don't necessarily want to flood their main feed's subscribers with.

Viewing
How do I search for something on FriendFeed?

Just type your search query in the search box at the top of the page and click the "Search" button. By default, we search over the contents of posts from the feed you're viewing (for example, if you're viewing the feed of a group you're subscribed to and you conduct a search, we will search over all the entries in that group by default).

A dropdown of options including "Search my friends" and "Search everybody" will also appear as you type your search query, and you can use these to search over posts from you and your friends, or from all FriendFeed users.

To get to advanced search, click on the "Search" button without anything in the text box, or on the "Advanced" link once you've done a search.

What advanced search operators are available?

from:
return entries from a specific user
from:bret

group:
return entries within a specific group
group:movie-reviews

friends:
return entries from all of that user's friends
friends:jim

service:
return entries from a particular service
service:yelp

intitle:
return entries with specific words in the entry title
intitle:pizza

incomment:
return entries with specific words in the entry's comments
incomment:awesome

comment:
return entries that have been commented on by a specific user
comment:paul

comments:
return entries with at least this many comments
comments:10

like:
return entries liked by a specific user
like:sanjeev

likes:
return entries with at least this many likes
likes:10

-
exclude a term (word, user, etc.) from your search
jobs -steve

,
perform an OR
from:paul,bret,jim,sanjeev friendfeed

What are these entries that I'm seeing from people that I'm not subscribed to?

We wanted to make it easy for you to see the entries that your friends have commented on and liked. So we show these friend-of-a-friend (FOAF) entries, and indicate in the parentheses why you're seeing it in your feed. This is also a fun way to discover interesting new content and people. If you don't like seeing stuff from your friends' friends, you can easily hide these kind of entries.

How do I hide some items?

You can hide any item in FriendFeed by clicking on the "Hide" link beneath that entry.

Once an entry has been hidden, there will be a link to "hide other items like this one." Click this link and you will be presented with additional hiding options, depending on the type of item you wanted to hide. Just make sure to do this from the specific type of entry you want to hide. For example, if you only want to hide the friend-of-a-friend entries from some of your friends, make sure to follow the above steps on one of those entries.

You can view your hidden entries by scrolling to the bottom of your FriendFeed and clicking the "Show hidden entries" link.

Can I control who is allowed to send me a direct message?

Right now, only people you are subscribed to can send you a direct message.

Can I block a user?

You can block a user by visiting their feed and clicking the "Block" link. After you block another user, you won't see any of their posts or comments on FriendFeed, and they won't see any of your posts. However, they will still be able to see comments that you make on other people's posts and, if your feed is public, they could still read it if they are logged out.

To unblock someone you've already blocked, visit their feed and click on the "Unblock" link. After unblocking a user, you will again be able to view each other's posts and comments, including posts and comments made in the past.

How do I subscribe to just someone's comments and likes?

In addition to, or instead of, subscribing to a user's feed, you can also subscribe to their comments and likes separately. From the user's feed, there are links to their comments and their likes near the top right corner, and you can subscribe to comments and/or likes from those pages.

How do I stop the real-time updates?

Click on the circular pause icon at the top of your feed. This permanently turns off the updating for that page—even if you log out and log back in—until you press the play icon. In the meantime, you can still see updates by refreshing the page.

Customizing
Can I get notifications when there are updates to my feed?

Yes! We've got notifications via email, IM and/or a downloadable notifier.

To configure your notification options for any feed or friend list, click on the "Email/IM" dropdown in the colored bar at the top of the feed. Click "view all" to access all your notification options for FriendFeed.

You can also access all your notification options by clicking on "settings" and then "notifications". From this page, you can choose how and when you get notified, such as when there's a new comment on one of your posts or when there are new posts in one of your friend lists. You can even get notified in multiple ways for the same thing.

To stop all notifications, click the "stop all notifications" link at the bottom of the page.

How do I create a new friend list?
  1. Click on "Friends" in the green "Friends" box
  2. Click the "New friend list" link
  3. Name your friend list. You can add friends and groups to it right away.
How do I add friends or groups to a friend list?

You can do so in two ways:

  1. Go to either the friend or group's feed and click the "edit" link in the blue bar. Select from the available friends lists or create a new list. You can add friends and groups to multiple friends lists. If you uncheck "Home feed", updates from that friend or group will no longer show up in your main FriendFeed view and you will have to click on a friend list to seem them.
  2. Click on the friend list itself in the green "Feeds" box and then click on the "Add/remove friends" link on the green bar. This lets you add friends and groups in bulk.
How do I designate which feeds show up in my Groups box?

When you hover over the top right corner of the orange bar in your "Groups" box, a "prefs" link shows up. Click on that to choose the groups you'd like to see. You can select from the groups that you have posting privileges to (the groups where you don't have posting rights are treated as subscriptions, and they're listed under your "Subscriptions"). By default, we show the groups you interact with most frequently.

What keyboard shortcuts are available?

p
Post message (place focus in text box

P
Post message (place focus in "To" box)

q
Quiet (temporarily pause/unpause real-time)

/
Place focus in search box

esc
Remove focus from any text box

g then h
Go to your home feed

g then d
Go to Direct messages

g then m
Go to My discussions

g then b
Go to Best of day

How do I embed my FriendFeed into my blog?

If your feed is public, you can use our blog widget to embed your FriendFeed in your homepage or blog. We also have a lot of other widgets for your site, such as a chiclet to link your site's visitors to your FriendFeed, and a "Share on FriendFeed" link to give your readers an easy way to share content from your site to their FriendFeed.

Is there a mobile version of FriendFeed?

You can read and post to your FriendFeed via an iPhone-optimized web interface. There is also the FFtogo application, built using our API.

How else can I access FriendFeed?

You can view your FriendFeed in your iGoogle homepage, in Facebook with our Facebook application, or in a feed reader. Our Atom feed contains all comments, likes, and thumbnails, as well as detailed Media RSStags so you can get as good of a FriendFeed experience in your feed reader as you do on the FriendFeed site.

Other
What's the best way to report a bug or send feedback to FriendFeed?

If you're experiencing an issue or want to let us know about something that you'd like to see on FriendFeed, try the FriendFeed Feedback room. You can search to see if others have experienced the same thing, or share your thoughts with us and other FriendFeed users.

If your issue involves personal information, or you don't feel comfortable publishing your message in the room, contact us using our bugs form.

Finally, if you have any questions about our API, you can discuss them with us and other FriendFeed developers in the FriendFeed API developer forum.

I have a suggestion for a site to add to FriendFeed.

Great! Let us know using our suggestion form. We do require a site to have per-user RSS or Atom feeds in order for us to support it. If it does, you can always add it as a "Blog" or a "Custom RSS/Atom" feed.

How do I stop getting emails from FriendFeed?

You can update your email preferences from "settings". You can also unsubscribe from all email from FriendFeed.

How do I delete my account?

Sorry to hear that you no longer want to use FriendFeed. You can delete your account here:http://friendfeed.com/account/delete

For Publishers

What are the <link> tags that the Bookmarklet supports?

The bookmarklet currently supports two <link> tags:

<link rel="image_src" href="http://example.com/test.jpg"/>

The referenced image will appear as a thumbnail. The user can replace or remove it.

<link rel="video_src" href="http://example.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=0000000"/>

The referenced video will appear as an inline player, if the video site is supported. Currently supported inline sites are:

We are working to add other sites, please contact us at bizdev@friendfeed.com if you would like your site to appear inline on FriendFeed.

How can I add a link on my site to share content to FriendFeed?

You can add a "Share on FriendFeed" link or use the FriendFeed API, or contact us atbizdev@friendfeed.com to discuss a more integrated experience.

How can I add my site to FriendFeed's list of supported services?

We periodically add new services based on user requests, traffic estimates, and technical difficulty. You cansuggest your site to help us prioritize what sites we add in the future.

Until it's added, per-user RSS feeds can be added as generic blogs, or items can be posted using theFriendFeed API.

How can I make photos and other media in my RSS feed show up on FriendFeed?

FriendFeed has limited support for importing Media RSS images. Please make sure the height and width of your media:thumbnails are set. If an appropriately sized image is present, it will be displayed.

Podcasts will appear on FriendFeed if an mp3 is referenced in either a media enclosure or a Media RSS element.

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