Customise Twitter To Eliminate Stuff You Don't Need

Since its redesign, "new" Twitter has offered a lot more information in its standard web client. Some of it can be helpful, some of it feels like clutter. Here's how to get rid of the stuff you don't want.

On a standard Twitter screen these days, as well as your timeline of tweets you get recommendations on people to follow, lists of trending topics, graphics showing followers and lots of other information. Some of this can be helpful: Twitter's trends list is much more useful now that there's an Australian option, for instance. However, if you're sick of constantly being told which lists you feature on, customising your interface can be useful. (Another option is to use a separate Twitter client, of course).

To change the Twitter interface, you'll need the AdBlock Plus extension. Despite the name, AdBlock Plus also lets you customise pretty much any element of a standard HTML page. (As an ad-supported site, we'll point out that blocking ads on your favourite sites is counter-productive.)

These instructions are based around Firefox, but the same technique should work on any platform If you haven't already installed AdBlock Plus, you can grab it here.

Here's the steps you need to follow.

Select the Tools menu, and select AdBlock Plus Preferences. (The keyboard shortcut is Control-Shift-E.) Then Click on the Add filter button.

Add any of the following filters, depending on what you want to do. To add a new filter, click 'Add filter' and copy the appropriate text into the text input box that appears.

  • To get rid of the list of Trends, add (Unfortunately, it's not possible to eliminate individual trending topics using the same techniques that worked with the old interface.)
  • To get rid of just 'Promoted trends', add*.trend-item.promoted-trend.
  • To get rid of the list of promoted Twitter services, add
  • To get rid of lists you've been added to, add
  • To get rid of the list of recent people you've followed , add
  • To get rid of the list of people you've recently followed, add
  • To get rid of the Favorites list, add

Click on OK twice to exit the dialog.

Reload your Twitter page (you may need to do a full reload with Control-Shift-R after adding a new rule), and the offending element(s) should have vanished. Easy, hey?

Lifehacker 101 is a weekly feature covering fundamental techniques that Lifehacker constantly refers to, explaining them step-by-step. Hey, we were all newbies once, right?


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