Traverse Facebook Comments by Time

I have written a bookmarklet that facilitates traversing all Facebook comments for a given post in time order. This applies to the full version of the Facebook website.

To install the bookmarklet, click here to bring up a page with the bookmarklet in it, along with some simple instructions.

Also see my Expand All bookmarklet.

Things you must know

To use this bookmarklet, you must have a single post isolated to a browser tab or window. To do this, ctrl-click on the timestamp of the post you are interested in.

Next, you most likely will need to run my “Expand All” bookmarklet to expand all comments and replies. The only comments linked are the comments you can see at the time. By the way, this links comments and replies.

Finally, when you run this “Link Comments” bookmarklet, it will jump to and highlight the last comment made on the post. (If you don’t see a highlighted comment, something went wrong.) To traverse, use the keyboard:

  • Ctrl+up: jump to previous comment (if any).
  • Ctrl+down: jump to next comment (if any).
  • Ctrl+home: jump to first comment.
  • Ctrl+end: jump to last comment.
  • ESC: detach this bookmarklet from the page.
  • Mouse click on a comment: highlight and make that comment the current comment.
    • Ctrl+click: shade all comments newer than the one clicked.

It’s not recommended, but you can also traverse the comments using the mouse by clicking on the older/newer links generated by the bookmarklet.

What does this [not] help with?

This solves a need I had; maybe others will find it useful. Let me describe example scenarios I wrote this for:

  • I care about the post, who comments, and what they say. (Not worthless comment bait, or something posted by a public figure with many throw-away comments that I don’t care about.)
  • I’ve been following the post but am losing track of all the comment threads emerging like tentacles. I don’t want to read from the beginning each time; I just want to see what’s new.

Let me emphasize: if you are freshly coming to a post with many tentacles, you’ll want to read the post in branch-sequence (i.e., how Facebook presents it to you), not time-sequence. It’s only when you’ve watched comments unfold that time-sequence makes any sense, and that’s what this bookmarklet is intended to help with.

7 Replies to “Traverse Facebook Comments by Time”

      1. Hey Jens-Ingo Farley
        thank you for your amazing script!
        is so helping me!
        I have little question:
        can you please make for us modification for click on all the
        “Remind ‎YYYYY ‎ to answer questions” ?
        I am facebook-group’s admin, and I have to click all this message for a few Member Requests.
        thank you!!!

        Zevik
        my email: aviner.zevik@gmail.com

        1. If “Translate All Comments” didn’t itself depend on user interaction to show or not, I would be more tempted to jump on it. As it is, if this link decides to show itself, it only does the translation that Expand All already triggers (but faster, yes). I might play around with this if I get around to it.

          Edit: I wasn’t paying attention to where this comment was made. If you’re not familiar with my Expand All bookmarklet, see here.

  1. This is WONDERFUL ! I have been wondering how to do this very thing for quite a while now and this works very good ! Thank you !

    I bet this would not be too hard to modify to work in LinkedIn discussion groups.

    Have you ever looked into that application ?

    boB Gudgel

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