I have two kids with active schedules, and a wife who likes to unwind at the end of the day with a procedural crime drama. As a result, I DVR a lot of sports. Attempting to avoid the final score of a game I have recorded is a regular occurrence and a feat made more difficult with the presence of Facebook and Twitter. With Chrome extension Silencer, I can filter Facebook and Twitter to remove posts that may give away the result of a game. Or a TV drama I am behind on. Or suggested posts on Facebook or promoted tweets on Twitter.
Silencer installs a button to the right of Chrome's URL bar and does not require a reboot. When visiting Facebook or Twitter, click on the button to filter or "mute" certain keywords. You'll also find three groups of keywords to avoid seeing spoilers for "Arrested Development," "Game of Thrones," and "Mad Men." I can only assume a "Breaking Bad" group will be added this summer for its final season.
The extension keeps separate lists for Facebook and Twitter, which gives you flexibility in filtering each social network. It also creates somewhat of a catch-22 in that you must visit either site in order to add keywords to mute. I would advise setting up your keyword filters prior to the start of a game or exciting season finale you have set to DVR. Silencer remembers your keywords from one session to the next.
While I can add "Cincinnati Reds" to avoid seeing the score of the Reds-Cardinals Sunday Night Baseball game that I will almost certainly have to DVR next weekend, I also found that the extension was useful in filtering out Facebook's suggested posts or promoted tweets. For example, I added the term "Verizon Wireless" to hide the suggested post from the cellular carrier I frequently see in my Facebook feed. I also added the keyword "promoted" for Twitter to block all promoted tweets.
Upon the conclusion of viewing your game or chosen TV drama series, you can remove or unmute a term by visiting either Facebook or Twitter, clicking on the extension's button, and then clicking on one of your terms listed.
The developer states that Silencer is "being actively developed...and will have a steady stream of updates in the coming weeks and months." In its current state, the extension feels a bit buggy. For example, when you add a keyword to mute, it lists it multiple times for Facebook. Also, I did see Facebook posts with keywords I had chosen to silence for a split second before they disappeared when I first loaded the page. These posts didn't stick around long enough for me to digest their contents, but I'd rather they not show up at all.