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Stop using your mouse like a sucker. Get more out of Facebook and Twitter by learning their keyboard shortcuts.

It’s something longtime computer users have known for years: keyboard shortcuts make everything faster. It’s true for text editing Master These Universal Keyboard Shortcuts For Text Editing Master These Universal Keyboard Shortcuts For Text Editing After months of practicing, you have finally boosted your typing speed above that of a snail. You have finally got the hang of not looking at the keyboard for each character. You are no longer... Read More , it’s true for using accent marks How To: Easy Keyboard Shortcuts For Accent Marks on Letters [Mac] How To: Easy Keyboard Shortcuts For Accent Marks on Letters [Mac] Read More and it’s true for Gmail users Quickly Learn Gmail's Keyboard Shortcuts With KeyRocket For Gmail Quickly Learn Gmail's Keyboard Shortcuts With KeyRocket For Gmail Get the most out of Gmail by learning all of its keyboard shortcuts. With Keyrocket for Gmail you'll be shown a notification every time you use the mouse instead of a keyboard shortcut, helping you... Read More .

But it turns out these time-saving gestures can also help you with your time wasting, by turning you into the ultimate Facebook and Twitter ninja. Think about it: what if you could browse your Facebook news feed, like posts and leave comments all without touching your mouse? Or explore your Twitter timeline, mark favorites, leave replies and retweet posts the same way? Keep reading if you want to get the most out of Twitter and Facebook, because I’m going to explain the best keyboard shortcuts for both sites.

Scrolling Up And Down

Before we get into any other keyboard shortcuts, we need to cover the absolute basics: browsing by individual posts. Facebook and Twitter share a keyboard shortcut for this which is favored by sites all over the web: “J” for down, “K” for up. That’s right, you can browse Facebook and Twitter one post at a time, all without moving your right hand from the home position.

Why not simply use the arrow keys? Because those just scroll up and down and don’t conventionality skip between posts. Anyway: open up either site, right now, and try it. When you do you’ll see a line to the left of the selected post on Facebook:

facebook-selected

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It’s subtle, but you’ll get used to looking for it.

The currently selected tweet is even more obvious on on Twitter, thanks to the blue highlight:

twitter-selected

You can use these shortcuts on the home page of either service, but also while browsing the pages of individual users. It’s important to get used to using “J” and “K” to scroll if you want to take advantage of any keyboard shortcuts that pertain to the currently selected post/tweet.

Speaking of: let’s get to those.

Interacting With Posts

You now know how to navigate Facebook or Twitter using only the “J” and “K” keys. Let’s get to actually interacting with the posts you’re scrolling to – but note these shortcuts will only work if you’re using J/K to flip between posts (this sites which post/tweet you intend to interact with).

The first thing to learn: replying. Whether you’re leaving a comment on Facebook or sending a response on Twitter, the keyboard shortcut for replying is a single button. Facebook users can press “C” to leave a comment.

facebook-reply

Twitter users, meanwhile, need only press “R” to send a @reply to any tweet:

twitter-reply

Not in the mood to actually, like, type a reply? Facebook users can simply press “L” to Like a selected post. Leaving a trail of raised thumbs has never been simpler: just J/K through your timeline and press “L” when you see something you like. You don’t even need to move your hand.

Twitter users have two choices: “F” to favorite a tweet and “T” to retweet. You’ll see this take affect instantly:

twitter-favorit

Already you can explore, reply to, and otherwise interact with posts faster than ever before. Start using Facebook and Twitter this way and you’ll wonder how you ever did otherwise.

Sending A Message

The keyboard shortcut for posting on Twitter is simple: just press “N” and the post window will show up:

twitter-post

Facebook doesn’t have a dedicated shortcut for this, but if you use J/K to browse to the “Update Status” box you’ll see it’s selected:

facebook-post

Hit “Enter” and you’ll be in the post box, ready to submit your inane rants to the world. Use responsibly.

Jumping From Page To Page

Here’s where things get weird for Facebook users. You can use two keys, combined with a number, to jump between different Facebook pages – like the Home screen, or your personal timeline. What are these keys? It depends on your operating system and browser. Here’s Facebook’s list:

  • Internet Explorer for PC: Alt + #, then Enter
  • Firefox for PC: Shift + Alt + #
  • Safari for Mac: Ctrl + Opt + #
  • Firefox for Mac: Ctrl + Opt + #
  • Chrome: Ctrl + Opt + #

So what are these numbers? You can read Facebook’s official list, if you want, but to me the most useful things to know are that “1” gets you to the Facebook home page, “2” gets you to your personal timeline and “4” gets you to incoming messages.

Twitter makes things a little easier, in that the keyboard shortcuts for jumping from page to page are the same in every browser. You need only press “G” (for “Go”), followed by a one-letter shortcut for where you want to go. “G” followed by “C”, for example, will take you to the “Connect” page.

twitter-interactions

“G” followed by “H” will take you back home; “G” followed by “D” will take you to the discover page. It’s pretty easy to understand, and kind of makes you wonder what Facebook is thinking with its number system. Knowing both of these, however, is useful for any social networking enthusiast – with them you can explore the sites quickly.

Where To Find Full Lists

As I mentioned before, Facebook offers a complete list of Facebook keyboard shortcuts. Twitter makes things simpler – to see a full list of keyboard shortcuts you need only hit “?” while using the service:

twitter-shortcuts

Or, if you prefer, you can check out this social media shortcut inforgraphic. It outlines all the shortcuts above, along with some for Google Plus and YouTube. We’ve also got cheat sheets for Twitter or Facebook shortcuts, if you want to download a PDF outlining everything. Print them for a one-page summary.

I haven’t outlined all the keyboard shortcuts here – just the ones I think are most useful. Think I missed something? Please, leave your favorites in the comments below. I’m looking forward to hearing from you.

Image Credits: Notebook keyboard Via Shutterstock

  1. Star
    March 11, 2015 at 12:47 pm

    Here's my question: Is there a way to submit an article post on FB using a shortcut key instead of clicking the "Share" button or whatever it says in the bottom right corner of the window? These mid-process windows (the ones where you choose who to share with and can write a comment above the linked article) often bleed off the bottom of my laptop screen, and no amount of down arrowing or attempts to reposition, reduce, or enlarge the window allow me to see the lower half. I was going to try shrinking my display magnification, but that involves shutting down the computer, which I'd rather not do since I'm in the middle of writing a post. (My eyesight is not good enough to keep the display on a tiny mag setting all the time.) I thought of tabbing my way to the button, but once the cursor goes out of sight, I lose track of how many stops it has to make before reaching the desired button. (I don't want to hit "cancel" by mistake.) Thank you in advance to anyone who has an answer to this. (I will submit my question to "MakeUseOf Answers", too.)

    • Justin Pot
      March 11, 2015 at 3:56 pm

      I have a feeling that, were I in the same room as you, we could figure this out. As-is, I'm not entirely sure I understand what your problem is. But I'll venture a guess:

      To switch from the editing field to the "Post" button, hit the "Tab" key. You can then hit Enter to submit your post.

      I'm sorry if that's not what you're looking for.

  2. Randy K
    August 12, 2013 at 4:01 pm

    Productivity is the way to go. I also did not know about these keyboard shortcuts for social networking. I appreciate anything that helps me increase my efficiency and speed. Thank you!

  3. Abhinav A
    August 9, 2013 at 7:59 am

    cool stuff....thnx for sharing.....

  4. Stephanie S
    August 7, 2013 at 2:33 am

    Thanks, Justin! Another informative and useful article. I can trust you all to provide some of the best info on the 'net.

    • Justin Pot
      August 7, 2013 at 2:45 pm

      Happy to help when we can.

  5. Ole F
    August 6, 2013 at 6:09 am

    I thought I was good at shortcuts, but NO.
    Never heard about the j, k or l shortcut in FB - cool.
    About the "jumping" I can't get this to work :-(

    • Justin Pot
      August 7, 2013 at 8:02 pm

      Yeah, I've no idea why the "jumping" is so hard. Try a bunch of different combinations, I guess. What's your OS/browser?

  6. C J
    August 5, 2013 at 6:04 pm

    Any insight on how I can get twitter to display posts in book order, instead of new on top order... e.g.
    2- The End
    1- In The Beginning

  7. Barbara L
    August 5, 2013 at 5:19 pm

    what/where is "opt" on the keyboard

    • max
      August 5, 2013 at 6:26 pm

      The opt key is available on Mac system

      • Justin Pot
        August 5, 2013 at 8:03 pm

        Yeah, those shortcuts come straight from Facebook. I'd guess use "Alt" on a PC.

  8. Anna G
    August 5, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    Maybe I have too new of a timeline, but unless there's a secret I don't know about, these don't work on Chrome or Firefox. It's a shame - I love keyboard shortcuts.

  9. Kcalpesh A
    August 5, 2013 at 3:30 am

    Totally new to me... thanks for sharing! The shortcuts are really helpful!

  10. Miah L
    August 4, 2013 at 7:55 pm

    Cool, didn't know there are keyboard shortcuts for Facebook and Twitter, this will make it easier since I use both social networks everyday! lol... Thanks for sharing! :)

  11. Jennifer Majors
    August 4, 2013 at 10:10 am

    It's funny how long I've had these services without knowing this stuff. Will have to give it a shot.

  12. Max K
    August 3, 2013 at 10:30 pm

    I lol'd at the second part of the title :P

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