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How does Facebook determine which Friends appear on your Facebook Profile sidebar?

Why do some Facebook friends appear more often on your Facebook Profile sidebar. Is there a known reason why some friends picture will show up more than others in the facebook sidebar?
Feb 24th, 2011


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210 Answers

+2 

On your own profile page, it appears to be partly random, but I think a large factor is who you interact with (and your friends interaction with you) in terms of wall posts, comments, likes, photo tags that include you (or your photo tags that include them), etc. and also profile views.   I would guess that wall posts, comments and photo tags play the largest roll in determining your friends sidebar.

It may also show friends whom profiles and/or pictures you view more often (or they view your profile), although this would only be one factor in the algorithm.

There's a possibility that it may also take into account and show friends who have more friends in common between you and other friends (although I doubt this is a huge factor).

Facebook will cache your friends sidebar, so if you refresh the page you may see the same friends (possibly in a different order).

Keep in mind, the exact algorithm that Facebooks uses to determine your friends sidebar is not known publicly, so this is just a best guess.

If you go on one of your friend's profile page, they tend to put friends that are closest to you in terms of friends of friends, network or mutual friends so you are more likely to know them.

how do you know this I am writing a report about this matter –  riceboy3o  Mar 14th, 2011 at 3:55 AM
It's an educated guess as a computer programmer who knows how these things can be programmed. It's also from studying which friend's profiles come up most often and which profiles don't, and then correlating the reasons why. If you're doing a report on the facebook friends sidebar and want a more definitive answer, I would suggest trying to get a hold of a facebook employee who works on code and may have greater insight into how the friends sidebar algorithm is coded. –  Answers  Mar 14th, 2011 at 4:35 AM


girl23
0 
It's got to be which pages you view most. I have no interaction with my boyfriend's profile, nor he with mine, but I look at his the most. He almost always appears on my sidebar.


susuu
+1 
im pretty its who views your profile most, not whos you visited most
that's it, i'm pretty sure...i have had the same people on my sidebar for the past 24 hours and a couple of them are potential stalker suspects...and there is one of these sidebarStalkers who's page i've never been to before, so it either has to be irregularly consistent...or weighted due to actions on your friends' part, at least for a portion of the equation. –  davis11  Jun 18th, 2011 at 8:51 PM
I agree with you. As I sat here reading what you wrote, I noticed on my side bar people who I have interacted with this evening, but all of a sudden someone from the bottom of the list came in second. So, either she looks at my page a lot, or she is NOW looking at my page. You are smart. Got any other things to share with me? –  snnoopy  Jun 9th, 2013 at 4:08 AM


elizabeth
0 
I think it is an indication of who views your profile. I recently reached out to an out-of-touch friend who appeared on my profile's sidebar, and he said it was uncanny I reached out to him because he had just been looking at my profile after I popped up on his newsfeed. It's pretty revealing to see it that way!


Anonymous
0 
Conversely, there are folks' whose profile I look at daily and I never pop up in their sidebar. So I think it's likely based more on interaction (as some of these individuals also rarely appear on my sidebar).
you dont see your name on their sidebar because when u go to their profiles, what you see is your "mutual friends". Youre the only one who sees your "top stalkers" on your profile page.:-) –  romeosgirl  Dec 27th, 2012 at 3:45 PM


urmom
0 
Well most of the things i have read say that its completely random, but i like to pretend that its my top stalkers(;


Jason
+2 
It certainly is not totally random. Its the same 20 people for me ( I have 130 friends.)
I think its a combination of the people with whom you have most interaction and who is online at the time. But I also think facebook throws 2 random folks into the mix to make it appear random. ... Facebook will never let you know who has been secretly visiting your profile. If that got out, people would stop stalking and facebook would lose money.


Anonymous
0 
I believe some of it is based on who views your profile often, whilst others are put in there by random. You can tell by the consistency of their picture and name being shown on your bar. If it is there the majority of the time, then it is most likely because they look at your profile quite frequently. Others are most likely just random.


0 
Ok..Ok.. it is most definitely who views YOUR profile the most!!! I know this because the same 3-4 guys that ALWAYS appear on my profile, constantly text wanting to get together! I'm sure FB also throws a couple randoms in as well so most people can't tell. When they bug you by phone, they are for sure stalking you on FB! Think about it! :)


sillyfilly1297
0 
i do beilive its who views your page the most! or at least thats what i pretend it is :D because one of my ex boyfriends is ALWAYS on there and im pretty 100 percent sure he wants to get back together with me :) or just stalk me you know....hahhaha

i dont think it is who you interact with the most, because i haven't talked to him or interacted with him on there in like a month. so yeah.
I dont know for sure how facebook does it, but I do know one thing. It has nothing to do with interaction. Like Sillyfilly my ex-boyfriend and I have not spoken to each other in more than three months, but he stills shows up on the sidebar every time I pull it up. –  Annie77  Dec 10th, 2011 at 9:23 PM


copper
0 
I also think it is who views your page the most because I don't go to anyone's page but the same people keep showing up on the bar. Kind of spooky but I don't think that we will ever know.


anon
0 
I actually reckon what it shows on your personal wall is based both on people you interract with AND those you view more (hence the stalker coincidences), BUT when you view someone elses page its based purely on their public interraction, maybe mixing short and long-term so thats why both very new and old friends pop up.

I'm sure it's all based on loads of variables, but I definitely don't think they'd give away anything about what pages other people have viewed; the Facebook lot have made a point that they will never do so, so I doubt they'd subtly divulge that info through the side bar...
Source(s):
curiosity


Bethany
+2 
I actually searched the FB help center a few weeks ago to find out once and for all who is chosen for the sidebar, and the official answer is that it's mostly who you often interact with PUBLICLY, and also a few people chosen at random. So, if you often write on a friend's wall or they write on yours, often "like", comment, or are tagged in someone's links/photos, attend the same events, or exchange any public actions that others can already see (actions that aren't hidden by your privacy settings), it will show those people on your sidebar. But it DOES NOT have anything to do with viewing profiles, FB chat, or private messages that are sent or received. This is good, since even though we're all curious about who's been checkin us out or which friends from five years ago are still interested in what we're doing, none of us want our own viewing history to be revealed to anyone...lol :) It keeps everyone from being embarrassed; the friends you publicly interact with the most are probably some of your closer friends anyway (or at least the more interesting ones), and if everyone could see who was viewing their profiles, we'd probably all be less likely to check out our friends' (or crush's) new statuses or pictures! That would be bad for Facebook, they'd totally lose business by revealing any information that would make people less likely to use their features. So ladies, stop planning your weddings around the cute boys who keep showing up on your sidebar! Facebook isn't telling you any secrets, or anything you don't already know, period.

::speculation:: I do wonder, however, if FB sometimes throws in a person you haven't interacted with in a long time (showing up on your sidebar or in your NewsFeed), and also decides to show your updates on their NewsFeed or your name on their sidebar for a while, just to see if you might remember to check out their pages and reconnect. It would make sense that it might also do this with people you had "featured" on your profile in the past, but no longer (i.e. old boyfriends, best friends, etc.). I don't know about that, though, it's just an idea.

If you don't like the selection of friends who are currently showing up on your sidebar, you unfortunately can't change that one. What you can do, however, is click on the pencil at the top right of the sidebar and create groups to put special friends in (like a group of friends from your job, school, trip, best friends, etc). The featured groups that you create will appear above the default friends sidebar, and move the one you can't change farther down the page.
That doesn't really make sense though, the people in my friends box are people i have rarely/NEVER interacted publicly with, but two of them are people that I often stalk, and two others are people I think would probably stalk my profile. But literally NO public interactions with pretty much any of them. Weird.. –  addzn  Jan 21st, 2013 at 5:43 AM
It is definitely NOT just public interactions: a person shows up on one of my friend's page every single time I look and I know for a fact that they have had no public interaction for over a month ... but that they do private message each other a lot. –  mammal  Apr 3rd, 2013 at 12:55 AM


Jason
0 
Quick? Are you on the sidebars of anyone at the same time as they are on yours? I noticed lately I am not. I also noticed one girl whose profile I used to visit a lot was always on mine and I was never on hers.. and now I don't visit as often and she is never on mine but I am always on hers.. Coincidence? Idk what it means but I doubt it.


your mom
+2 
Quoting facebook here,
By default, a changing selection of friends always appears under the "Friends" heading in the left column of your profile. The selection includes many friends who you publicly interact with the most. Examples of public interactions include Wall posts, comments and mutually attended events — Facebook will never show friends based on whose profiles you choose to view or who you interact with over messages and chat.
Source(s):
http://www.facebook.com/help/search/?q=profile+fri...
^then click on 'Which friends appear in the left column of my profile?'
Not so sure you are right about that. My boyfriend and I broke up about three months ago or more. We dont talk AT ALL! Not ever! He never comments on my wall, comments, or anything. We never chat online, let alone attending the same "activity". So, how can it be people you interact with the most, when I have not heard one word from him since we broke up? –  Annie77  Dec 10th, 2011 at 9:31 PM
Okay, although Facebook does say that. I still have extreme doubts that it is at all entirely true. I know my ex stalks me through her friend's FB page and I always see her friend on my sidebar, especially when she is online! I've never talked to my ex's friend ever since I friended her on FB. So, why then I ask is my ex's friend on my sidebar if I do not and have not interacted with her in anyway? Case closed people. Those are sidebar stalkers. –  Anonymous2  Jan 25th, 2012 at 2:31 AM


Change
0 
I know what facebook says about it. It has said that ever since they started putting friends on the sidebar. I have also noticed that it appears to have changed over the last couple of weeks. Facebook can state one thing in their FAQs from years ago then change the algorithm. I'm going to pick someone random out of my friends and view their profile a lot to see what happens. I'm going to watch both my sidebar friends and theirs.
I agree, they definitely changed something in the last couple of weeks. It actually appears to be a bit more random, because different people seem to show up more often now. –  Answers  Jul 9th, 2011 at 3:17 PM


Dork
0 
Its not most viewed cause the most view person, other than my relationship and family list, has never been on there...most of them i never chat with, never do wall posts with, never get tagged in pics with...etc......


nate
0 
it seems to me that it is who ever viewed your profile most recently. its not gonna show you YOU in a friends sidebar, because you are YOU. to see yourself, you'd have to log into FB from a 3rd party profile and visit to see...


Pepe
0 
I think its partly who YOU view the most, and who you interact with likes, comments, visits your page etc.

because i really doubt that a friend that appears 90% of the time in my sidebar its viewing my facebook, considering he past away around 2 months ago.


Unknown
0 
i think it is the people who view your profile the most. I think your the only one who can see the side bar that you are seeing i think if friends look at your profile, it shows different so they want no who views yours the most...so they will want suspect nothing and can feel like a ninja stalker:)


em
0 
What you've said in your original article is definately true. Of my 15 or so friends that always pop up in my friends list on my profile, there are a few that I never publicly or privately interact with on facebook, we are not tagged in any of the same photos, we don't message or write on walls etc, and I don't look on their facebook pages. However I know they are frequently checking my facebook page because they always pop up in my friends list. There may well be other factors that are used to calculate who shows up in that list (e.g. public interaction, commenting on photos etc) but whether or not THEY look at YOUR page (and not the other way round) seems to be quite a big factor also. It's weird that Facebook have not officially annouced or confirmed this... I'm absolutely certain it's the case though. I do not get on with my bf's family, I don't check their fb pages ever, I don't email them or look at their photos coz i have no interest to see what they are doing etc. However, if I put up a new album from a night out or holiday, they all start appearing in my friends list. The only explanation is that they are all having a good snoop at my page and my photos.


brett
0 
Well i have a fair bit of friends around 500 and i always see the same probably 15 or 20 people some i talk too quite a bit in chat but never publicly and we havent been tagged in the same pics and some i never chat or look at there profiles yet they continually are showing up on my friends bar i just wish i knew why they were there


Hottsoundz NOW
0 
I must say that at some level, I've also always suspected that profile views had something to do with it. I noticed that I also see myself on certain people's side bars as well - mainly the people I interact with or people who's pages I view often with the intent to say something on their page before I get distracted and leave without ever saying anything. Out of all 700+ friends, I get pretty much the same few people in my side bar all the time. A few of them I don't even talk to much, but... I know for sure that I "give them" plenty reason to frequently view my page with all the wacky things and promotions I do. I used to get all females, until recently, this male dj who plays music similar to what I play started showing up there ever since I started promoting his station some time ago and he started checking out the music I posted on my page. The only thing, though, is there are other guys who are bigger fans of everything I do and even interact more often with my posts, yet they NEVER show up. I wonder if privacy settings have anything to do with who can be seen or not?

Really, when I actually think about it, I have no idea in reality why the people who show up there, do. When you factor in all the possibilities and circumstances, it only leads to more possibilities and questions to why it happens. Most of the "wishful thinking" presented here as facts are possibly pure myths. Maybe it's designed to 'almost' look a certain way just to keep you intrigued, wondering, and wanting to think about and interact with certain people. I'm sure part of facebook's crew are people who specialize in psychology and know what works when it comes to subconsciously keeping people's interest. One thing I know for sure is that the sidebar is not 100% random because there are tons of people who never (or have yet to) show up there. I'll experiment with talking to / interacting with nothing but new people for an entire week and see if anything changes.
Source(s):
My Facebook Page


Lucious
0 
I also suspect it is who visits YOUR profile being a large factor, although facebook will thro in a few random friends. I have 1300+ friends and an ex of mine keeps showing up on my sidebar along with some of the more familiar people I routinely communicate with. I have not talked to my ex or viewed her profile for over 2 weeks, yet she is always there, I can refresh over and over, but she is still there, just in different order. I know she is viewing being that other friends have told me she had been asking about what I meant by some statuses I would post. Out of curiousity, I had just went to her profile to see if I was on her sidebar but nope...not there. A couple of the friends on the list may be random, and some may be based on interactions, but the rest Im pretty sure have something to do with them viewing your pro.


cutecat
+1 
I have put up a survey to try and find out which friends are put on the sidebar on your profile page.
It would be really great if you could take it; it would really help.

link to survey:
http://www.zoomerang.com/Survey/WEB22CRQZ4LFKD

link to results:
http://www.zoomerang.com/Shared/SharedResultsSurve...
results link not working –  mammal  Apr 3rd, 2013 at 1:10 AM


Anonymous
0 
For a while now I have believed that who shows up in MY sidebar are the people that I view most. For example, my boyfriend broke up with me a few months ago and I have to admit, I still look at his profile and I'm assuming he doesn't look at mine anymore. We never actually communicated very much on facebook. But he always shows up on my sidebar and I never show up on his. So I guess what I'm asking is if I view his profile alot and never show up on his sidebar, but he always shows up on mine, wouldn't it make more sense if my friends list showed whose profile I was viewing rather than who was viewing my profile?
Hope you were able to follow that


anonymous
0 
it has nothing to do with who views your page the most!! these people are chosen randomly!


Sydney
0 
i think it's your stalkers. some of the people that are coming up make sense (ie. they just wrote on my wall), but some i've never written on the wall of (and vise versa). i just refreshed and the exact same group of 10 came up, but in a different order.


e


Rose
0 
I think it's people who have viewed your profile most recently, as the others said I haven't talked to some of the people but they're there in my friends bar. Then I later find out when I see them that they've been looking at my profile.
For example a friend of mine looked at my profile yesterday and as soon as she did she appeared in the side bar..... I know what facebook says is "official" but I think that they wouldn't tell everyone the reeeaal reason, because that way you know who's been looking at your profile and you're sure about it. Whilst this way you think it's some complex algorithm...when it's probably not.


RT
0 
One of the people routinely on this list is a deceased friend of mine, so I'm pretty sure it isn't about who checks your profile out the most. Hard to do that from Heaven...


kkkk
0 
It isn't who always veiws your account. I made another accoount for me and it always appears on my sidebar thing. and I never go on it nor do I ever look at the profile. How can i go on it. I forgot the password. I think it is partailly random and partailly not. or shows the least people who veiw your account and the most.
Source(s):
we cool


BK
0 
My former neighbor appears in my sidebar AND on my profile page on a regular basis. I do not interact with him at all on Facebook - if I want to contact him I call or text him. We have very few friends and events in common as well.

Does this mean he's checking my profile out on a regular basis?


kife
0 
just thought i'd add something here... some of the people who's profile i view most, it's because they post like crazy and i don't want to see it in the recent posts feed all the time. so block their posts in the feed but i might go to their profile more than others. it doesn't mean i'm more interested in them, in fact sometimes the opposite. just something to think about.


Drogo
0 
Okay, after experimenting with a few profiles, here's my results:

1) Most of the people that appear on the left are those you INTERACT with.
2) The remainder (maybe 20%?) are people chosen randomly from your friends list.

Facebook caches the list of friends on the left-hand side during every session, which is why if you push refresh on your browser, the same names will always appear. To create a new list of names, you need to logout, login to another account, logout, and login to your original account. You'll see new random names, plus the names of people you always interact with.
no, that doesn't work. have just done as you said, logged out, logged i under a different caaount, logged out, cleaned cookies, and logged back. 100 % same people on the left –  baby_racoon  Sep 19th, 2011 at 8:59 PM


JohnnyThunders
+1 
Haven't spoken to or interacted with my ex on facebook for 6 months, literally haven't viewed her profile ONCE, she constantly shows up. I have a feeling some of the people in there are people you USED to interact with, and they're coming up as suggestions to "reconnect" with, either as a result of them viewing your profile or just completely randomly. The people i interact with most barely show up, but sometimes do.
that makes sense ... –  baby_racoon  Sep 19th, 2011 at 9:01 PM


none
0 
Just to throw it out there, but what about people who have disabled the ability for people to write on their wall? For example, there is a classmate of mine who has disabled this feature, and when school ended one of our classmates (who has a huge crush on him) appears on his top friends list every couple of days. I am assuming she is stalking his page because it is virtually impossible to publicly interact with him, unless he is posting on her wall (which I highly doubt) But long story short I believe it is it largely who views someone's profile recently


anon
0 
My ex and I broke up over 5 months ago, we had very little interactions over facebook at all, seeing as he rarely went on facebook. There are a few pictures of us from when we went to a dance together, maybe about 10, but that's really the only interaction we had with each other over Facebook. Yet around the same time period, I was really good friends with this one girl that I am no longer friends with. I am always in my ex's sidebar, and he's always in mine. My old friend, however, is never in my sidebar. I'll look at my ex's profile, maybe once every blue moon, but not all that often. Plus we have both moved on, there are certainly more pictures of me with other people and I had greater interaction with other people, but they don't show up in my sidebar as often as he does. Sometimes I wonder if he checks up on me sometimes, and it kind of creeps me out.

Yet there's this kid that has been writing on my wall and messaging me every night and he has never appeared in my sidebar once.

And there's a girl that always explains what she saw on my wall that always appears in my sidebar, when I never look at her profile.

Personally, I feel that the people that look at your profile the most are the ones in the "friend" sidebar. I don't know. Interaction might factor in there somewhere, but I have no idea. Just my personal opinion:)


mark skinner
0 
however its decided, regardless, the developer should have his legs broken. it hides online friends to show friends who are not only offline but ones who ive never interacted with profiles or talked to on fb chat, its just crap


Jasmine
0 
I don't know if it can really be who looks at your profile the most... I have three friends with dead facebook accounts (lost the password or can't log in for some other reason), and they still show up on my sidebar, even though they haven't logged in for like 2 years.


Jake
0 

http://www.facebook.com/help/?faq=116320945119338&...

"Which friends appear in the left column of my profile?

The left column of your profile may display different types of people in your life:

We highlight your friend list.
By default, a changing selection of friends always appears under the "Friends" heading in the left column of your profile. The selection includes many friends who you publicly interact with the most. Examples of public interactions include Wall posts, comments and mutually attended events — Facebook will never show friends based on whose profiles you choose to view or who you interact with over messages and chat.

You can choose custom friends to highlight.
In addition to your general list of friends, you can choose to feature specific friends (e.g., best friends, roommates or coworkers) or groups to which you belong. Learn how to do this here.

Your family and relationship partner appear here, too.
If you choose to add family members or a relationship to your profile, those people will also be featured in the left column.


Frustrated FB User
0 
I'm really can not believe this is a random selection yet i can not seem to find a logical explanation either. I have had the same list of friends in my sidebar for weeks, it rarely changes bar 2 names now and again (of people who has recently publicly interacted with me or visa versa). I have people who i KNOW check my profile a lot and never appear on the list. I have FB friends who i interact with daily who have never featured either.

What i find really odd is the people on the list are all people who i would consider true, or old friends (even a couple that are family members) that i have actually met and spent personal time with and not just friends that i have made on FB. Strangely i dont connect much with these people on FB at all. I have many mutual friends and/or photographs with the people on the list but i also do with many many others who are not. I live over 6000miles away from home so location has nothing to do with it. I have 800 friends and not a single random person who i dont really know (networking contact) has ever been on the list, even though i know there are some stalkers.

I have tried logging in and out and resetting cache on my computer. I have another account which i have tried stalking myself with and that doesnt appear in my list. My list rarely changes.

Today i have a new friend on the list who is an old friend of mine, but we havent caught up in ages. however, i liked a status of theirs yesterday. but I liked many yesterday. Another friend left the list yet we have been publicly connecting more than usual over the last couple of days!!

Another point, i rarely check peoples profiles, i check the newsfeed instead. Yet i often check on my BF profile as he is in another country at the moment. We keep in touch via FB. I am rarely on his list and I definitely stalk him!!! unless my definition of stalking is not accurate, which is scary to say the least LOL!

i am totally baffled and frustrated, i can't work this one out! I am going to keep experimenting with my alias account and see if i can get on my list!! I am dying to know if these people are 'stalkers' or not. It would be really interesting (and nice in some cases) if they were!

As a last minute exercise for this post, i took the people on the list and tried to find a common theme based on the new fb 'see friendship' tool:

1. Friends since 2009. Have worked together, 0 photos, 2 posts on their wall in the last 1 yr, rare interaction. 15 mutual friends, however only has 49 in total and does like to keep up to date with the people they know but not 'use' FB.

2. Friends since 2009. Used to connect a lot on FB a couple of years back, now occasional likes and comments. 38 photos together. 25 mutual friends. Would definitely say this person checks my profile to keep up to date.

3. Friends since 2009. Same as above, we were three together (note number 2 and 3 have just come in to my list the last two days, since some comments and messaging). rarely we fb now. 40 photos, 37 mutual friends.

4. Friends since 2009 (popular year!). 0 photos, rare comments, 38 mutual friends. But 'likes' me!!!!

5. Friends since 2011, 26 mutual friends., 0 photos. occasional likes and comments. is a keen fb user and suspect keeps up with everyone. We work in the same industry.

6. Friends since 2007 (family), 20 mutual friends, 0 photos, rare connection at all. (however i know this family member follows me as we speak about it but they dont seem to be on fb much!)

7. Friends since 2008 (again family), 29 mutual friends, 5 photos (however no 7 has tagged me in many of theirs). A lot of recent interactions, i would be surprised if no 7 was not watching my profile.

8. Friends since july 2011 (another family member), 8 mutual friends, tagged photos are hidden, 0 interactions (This person is on FB a lot it seems, however does not interact much and keeps private, probably checks my profile)

9. Friends since 2011, but originally from 2009, we lost friendship and had to reconnect!! 238 mutual friends, 47 photos. 100% is on my profile a lot, however has only been a recent addition to the list this week!!

10. Friends since 2008, 8 mutual friends. rare connection if AT ALL on FB, but a close friend in reality. Again not in to interacting on fb, just keeping up.

So it makes sense that these people are on my list, i know them well and not surprised they would be keeping up with me especially as i'm far away.

Similarities:

Location:

2 of 10 are based in the same country as I and in close proximity - both use fb a lot.
5/10 are based in my home country, though not in the same town or city
The remaining 2/10 are in different countries and are people who i used to have a lot of FB connection but now not so much. We have similar friends and many photos.
1/10 is in a total different continent to everyone, however is family.

We all share familiar 'true' friends, and these friends i also interact with or have family/work/previous location links. This last point has me thinking, maybe quality of mutual friends plays a part. Only no 4 doesnt have 'quality' friends. (true stalker???)

btw - i do not have anyone listed as Family or 'in a relationship with' or visa versa.

Any other thoughts?


Miss Sunshine
+1 
I think its a mixture of random people, people who view your profile, people you interact with and the people you view often. In the list of friends on the sidebar 4 I have interacted with frequently, 2 people I posted something on their wall or liked their pictures and then I have 2 random people I never talk to but that leaves two people who I know frequently view my page. How do I know? Because they told me....A guy just said to me that he reads my status-updates and looks at my photos.....


Anonymous
0 
There is a friend that I rarely interact with on FB, only thru e-mails and the persons picture is always on my side bar, I love the picture so that is great. Maybe this person visits my profile a lot I don't know.


Anonymous
0 
I'm assuming its based on how many times they view your profile. I have about 1500 friends. My boyfriend's ex who I went to high school with and don't talk to, in messages or on her page, quite consistently shows up in my side bar. As does a girl I went to college with several years ago who I knew for a short time and did not have much interaction with. Only a few are friends I used speak to frequently, but not much facebook interaction, yet have talked to in months. There are many people I interact more with and who I have more mutual friends with, yet the ones who show up are not people I talk to as much.


Yvonne
0 
But the question is WHY would fb show who has been stalking u? It makes no sense of them to divulge such information to u. A randomly generated list is so much easier.
Because it makes your Facebook profile more sticky (or intriguing) for you, thus in a round about way, helping to get "you" to visit Facebook more often. In a sense they haven't divulged any information, but because it is not totally random, they just allude to it. Making people who use Facebook wonder if their crushes, crazy friends, boyfriends, girlfriends, ex's, etc. are "stalking" or "checking out" their facebook profile/pics when they show up on their Facebook sidebar. There's a lot of internet "Intra Personal Psychology" being played out just from the Facebook sidebar. –  Answers  Sep 7th, 2011 at 8:07 PM


1985
0 
An interesting thing is that when I am viewing my own profile, I see one set of friends regularly. However, when I "View As" someone else (like a guy friend who has a big crush on me) an entirely different set of my friends are displayed. When I view my own profile, I see this guy's picture all the time, but I also just see people who are friends of mine, who would have been looking at my profile (like my best friend, my family, etc.) But when I "View As" this guy friend, a bunch of my better-looking guy friends come up, as well as friends he and I have in common.

Interesting.
Source(s):
My facebook and my analytical mind.


Anonymous
0 

Well, I stumbled upon this because I really like this guy and he kept jumping from the "more online friends" section to the "top online friends" section. I really wanted to know what the difference was, and how it was determined! So, after reading a few theories and sorting through my list of top online/offline friends (because sometimes they're offline...) I came up with this:

It is definitely the people who you interact with most. The people whose profiles you have visited most recently will appear there as well. Also, it has to do with who you talk to in the chat. HOWEVER, I also think that it has to do with viewing your page- for example, I seldom go to my mom's page, but she's always in there when she's online!

Though I do believe that it has to do with who is viewing your page, I do not think this is a major factor. Indeed, there are some people in the list who only talk to me on chat sometimes and whose pages I seldom visit and who I doubt visit my page. It's a tricky situation, and some are random, but I think it mainly has to do with whose page YOU are viewing, not how much interaction goes on between you two. The people in my top online friends are the people whose profiles i visit frequently to check out pictures.

I still don't know about the jumping from "more online friends" to "top online friends" thing, but i like to think that it's him viewing my page too ;)

Source(s):
Just my own thought processes


almaa
0 
Well, it can't be who you look at the most, as many of the profiles that I view the most are not on my sidebar, and the ones that are, I rarely look at. .....


FB User
0 
I have always kept my list to a mininum of 100 "selective" friends, which make things easier to keep track of. As for the sidebar, I've been noticing this for a while that same people show up on my friends list, in random.
This is normal, HOWEVER every once in a while there is a new face that appears on your list... this signifies that the person has visited your page.
How is that so? Well, I happened to be avoiding this person for weeks after a dispute we had over a post on FB, and since then I've been too careful not to view her profile for fear that there might be some special app going on (e.g. profile tracker). And so I completely avoided her, that which includes not clicking photos or any updates that shows up on the Newsfeed. But whenever her face shows up on my sidebar in a blue moon, that's when I know she's checking my page, without a single doubt.
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