Learn About Facebook Video Calling, and How To Turn It Off

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Earlier this month, Facebook announced an agreement with Skype that allows Facebook users to place calls without ever leaving the Facebook website. This partnership may create issues for individuals concerned about privacy or those with far too many Facebook friends.  This article will illustrate the power of Facebook’s new Video Calling application and provide some helpful tips on limiting who can send video call requests.

Getting Started with Facebook Video Calling

If you already have a Facebook account, simply log in and visit http://www.facebook.com/videocalling.

Image provided by http://www.facebook.com/videocalling/

You will be prompted to install a plug-in that will allow you to send and receive calls by clicking one of the two Call buttons featured on the Facebook user interface. The first button is located on an individual’s profile page between Message and Poke. The second button is on the instant chat window, next to the Settings dialog. Either of these can be used to initiate a Facebook chat.

Limiting Calls to Certain Friends

Many people already have friend lists set up to take advantage of Facebook’s advanced privacy settings. Setting up a friends list is the only way to limit incoming calls and chats, so if you’ve delayed in adding the people you know or work with to specialized friends lists, it is strongly recommended that you take this step for the additional layer of privacy it provides. To create a new friends list, click on the sidebar navigation item Friends, then click on Manage Friend List. By clicking Create a List, you can add  a subset of your friends to a Video Calling friends list. Simply name the list anything you like, add your selected friends, and click Create List. Then, click Chat on the bottom right corner of the screen, and select Settings, Limit Availability. By toggling the menu item to Only make me available to and selecting the friends list you just created, you will limit both chats and video calls from friends outside of your new friends list.

Temporarily Go Offline

To make yourself temporarily available for Facebook video calls, simply select Chat at the bottom right corner of the screen, click Settings, then uncheck Available to Chat. This will make you unavailable for both video and text chats.

Clean Up Your Friends

It’s a good idea to regularly maintain your friends lists by removing friends that you do not know or no longer talk to. This can help keep your personal information secure from identity thieves and hackers.

Disable Video Chat

You can uninstall the Facebook Video Calling plug-in altogether by going to your Control Panel, clicking Programs and Features, then selecting the Facebook Video Calling Plugin, and uninstalling it. Facebook will recognize that you do not have the plug-in installed and will prevent other users from calling you on Facebook. The plug-in can be reinstalled at a later date simply by visiting http://www.facebook.com/videocalling.