Ah, memories. Some of them -- especially the embarrassing things posted on social media -- we just don’t want to bring back into our lives, but Facebook has thought to change that with its latest update called "On This Day."
The new feature, introduced via a Facebook blog post Tuesday and expected to roll out soon, lets users easily look at old status updates, posts and photos that were shared on this date in the past. The update is similar to TimeHop, a mobile app that brings up memories from several social media accounts, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr; it has 6 million users.
These aggregated posts will be accessible in an On This Day bookmark or by visiting facebook.com/onthisday. The posts may also just show up in an individual’s News Feed, Facebook product manager Jonathan Gheller wrote in the blog.
The feature will be visible only to individual users for their own content, unless they choose to share it with friends. Now, if you’ve been neglecting to do a social media cleanse, Facebook has conveniently brought up daily reminders to do so.
With every post, you can easily click on the gray arrow on the top-right corner to either hide or delete it. Facebook introduced its own beefed-up search (after dropping Bing) back in December; the tool lets you bring up old content by searching for keywords.
Interestingly, Facebook faced criticism in December for its "My Year In Review" -- an individualized compilation of a user’s most popular posts and photos over the last year. The feature brought up painful memories, such as a house fire or family member’s death, for some, which forced Facebook to issue an apology.
But that didn’t stop the company from introducing this new daily reminder of our pasts. There is not an option to opt-out from the On This Day stories resurfacing in News Feed, but the stories can be hidden and limited to decrease the likelihood of such posts showing up again.
The feature’s algorithm assures that previously connected romantic partners won’t appear (no promises for hookups), nor friends who have died in a News Feed story but could on the On This Day page.