When Is The Facebook “Hide From Your Timeline” Feature Coming? It’s In The Testing Phase For Now

One of the things that Facebook has always had going for it some other social media services don’t is that it’s not nearly as ephemeral — but that might be changing with the addition of a feature that lets you post statuses only to the News Feed. So when is the Facebook “Hide From Your Timeline” feature coming? Unfortunately we don’t know yet; it’s in the testing phase only.

A feature that some are comparing alternately to Snapchat and Twitter, “Hide From Your Timeline” will allow Facebook users to post statuses directly to the News Feed without them ever appearing on your Timeline. It works by the user simply checking a box that says “Hide From Your Timeline” while writing the status; if this box is checked when the status is posted, it will appear only in the News Feed. This means that these kinds of statuses will be pretty difficult to find once a little bit of time has passed; their appearance in a feed is similar to the way tweets display on Twitter, while the fact that the statuses will sort of disappear afterwards is similar to Snapchat. You won't just be able to scroll through someone's Timeline to see everything they've ever posted anymore. However, they'll still show up in search, so do with that what you will.

To be fair, the ability to hide a post from your Timeline isn’t new; that feature has been around for pretty much as long as the Timeline itself has. The ability to have a post appear only in the News Feed and not the Timeline, however, is new — and indeed, it’s a result of feedback from Facebook users who expressed an interest in something like it. Says a Facebook spokesperson in an email to Bustle:

The Timeline on your profile is a great place to see a comprehensive history of your Facebook posts. We’ve heard feedback that sometimes, you may want to share a post with friends and family via News Feed and not have that post be displayed on your timeline. The ability to hide a post from your Timeline already exists, and today we’re testing a feature that would make it even easier to control where your posts live by giving you the option to publish a post only to News Feed and not to your Timeline.

For the curious, it looks like this:

If you just logged onto Facebook to give this feature a whirl yourself and didn’t find it, though, there are two possible reasons why: One, it’s only available on the full Web version of Facebook right now according to CNET, so if you logged onto the mobile app, it won’t be there; and two, it’s in the testing phase at present and may not be available for all users.

And therein, my friends, also lies the answer to the “when will this cool new feature be available?” question: We don’t know; it’s only being tested right now. Heck, it’s possible that it might not even make it past the testing phase — not all features do, the same way that not all Starbucks drinks that are tested make it to the full menu. But the good news is that Facebook is listening; that’s been proven by the fact that the company took its cues from what users wanted in rolling out the “Hide From Your Timeline” feature in the first place. So at least we know that however it’s received, the social network will likely adapt accordingly.