Every change to Facebook has come with a bit of criticism. Most eventually gain acceptance, but some people continue to gripe about the photo viewer.
The photo viewer creates a lightbox effect. When you click on a photo in a news feed or album, it pops up in a “theater view” with a black border. You can browse through photos like a slideshow but must click out of the pop-up to get back to the original page. You can’t right-click to save the photo. Instead, you must click “download” in the bottom-left of the pop-up window.
There are five simple ways to turn off the photo viewer. The first two must be done manually each time and the others are extensions that require access to your Facebook profile.
- While using the photo viewer, just refresh the page and the lightbox will disappear. The photo can be viewed and saved the old-fashioned way with a right-click.
- Delete everything from &theater on in the URL and it will revert back to the old way of viewing photos.
- Facebook Photo Theater Killer: Firefox users can download the extension to disable the photo viewer.
- Revert FB Photo Viewer: For Chrome users, this reverts to the old version of viewing photos and runs silently in the background. According to the developer, it does not read, transmit or store any of your data.
- Better Facebook: The free extension works on browsers like Firefox, Chrome, Safari and Opera. There are more than 75 options to change your Facebook experience, including disabling the photo viewer.
Readers, do you wish you could disable the photo viewer on Facebook?
Guest writer Matt McKinley is a freelancer in Burbank, California.