Create a Better Community Experience With the New BuddyPress Friends-Only Activity Stream Plugin

All the credit for this plugin goes to Rich Fuller and is entirely based on his tutorial for hacking BuddyPress to remove non-friend updates from the activity stream. I simply packaged it up and made it a plugin, because I believe that it is an extremely useful modification to BuddyPress from a community-building perspective, and I wanted it to be easily available to whoever wants it.

Removing non-friend updates from the activity stream makes sense for a number of reasons. It builds meaningful relationships between community members who have chosen to be friends. Instead of seeing all updates for all users of the community, the user will be better able to keep up with his friends by seeing only their updates, which are probably of greater interest to him. This will enrich the user’s experience on your site far more than if you throw updates from all members at him. For a very active BuddyPress community, all updates can be simply too much information to process and can cause the user to devalue your site.

The Friends-Only Activity Stream plugin will limit the activity stream for general users to postings from their friends only. The admin user will see all activities, regardless of friendship. This plugin removes activity stream postings from non-friends all together with the exception of the admin and public groups. Right now is the only place you can download it. It should also be available in the repo soon. Simply install it, activate it, and it works! Many thanks to Rich Fuller for his work on this handy hack.


Comments (27)

  1. @Ted

    Hi! at the homepage, if you setted to display the activity stream instead of the latest blog posts, you’ll see everyone’s updates. The filter you are talking about is at the user’s profile page (at least in the latest versions of BP) ;)

    So this plugin is great then to show only the user’s friends updates :)

  2. Thanx again. Would be great if you could share some thoughts on re-directing to activity stream upon login. There was a plugin that sends you to profile, but that does not make a whole lot of sense to go back to your profile.

  3. Hello.

    It’s happening to me the same as Celso. It ONLY shows friends updates, but not the own ones. This includes comments on its, so when a user updates his state and gets comments on it, he can’t read them.

    Anyone has a solution?

    Great hack, anyway.


  4. Hi, tried to install the plugin and have same problem as mentioned above by Celso & Federico.

    I undertstand one can get it working with some modifications, can you please help with a hack?

    I also need activity not to show to non-friends and have own & freinds posts on the same page / stream (using the plugin is unfortunatelly blocking own posts)

    Thank you!

  5. Is there any way to create a dedicated activity stream just for groups?

    As far as I know, you can have the general activity, and then some streams for groups, personal, etc. The one fro Groups shows only the activity of all those groups you are following, but is there a way to create a stream that would show all groups activity only independent of weather you are following them or not. Just to make sure I am explaining myself, it would be something like this on the url:, rather than just example/memeber/john/activity/groups. The idea behind this question is to be able to block groups activity on the general activity stream, and then have in another page, the groups activity.
    Many thanks!

  6. Hi, I’m having a problem with this plugin. When a user post he can’t see his own post but only the post of his friends… I’m the only one to have that problem ?

  7. @bphelp Plugin works good, now problem I see is anyone who is not your friend, when you view their profile, I see no posts, which that is fine and the way I like it, but I see a “Load More” button still. How can I hide the load more button from peoples profiles who are not my friend or who have no previous activity?

  8. @enqinet
    Sorry for the late response. I have been kinda busy lately so Its taken me awhile to respond. I will work on the code that will hopefully do away with the load more when there is no activities and provide a message noting such. I will also wrap the code in a function that will also do away with the load more if your not friends and provides a message to indicate so. I will not say when I will get it done because I do this in my spare time. Just check in periodically and I will post the link when I update the plugin to reflect the changes when I can get it done and working properly. Anyone with help can contribute and fork it on
    so I encourage you to do so. Remember I am not the author, and I take no credit in this. I just added a bit of code to what Rich Fuller and Sarah Gooding already had in place. Thanks!

  9. @enqinet
    I have decided to abandon any further development on this plugin as there is now an awesome plugin out by @megainfo on the BuddyPress forums that is far more superior called BuddyPress Activity Privacy. It does what this plugin could never do, it gives the users a choice as to who gets to see an activity post and so much more. So out with the old and in with the new, get this awesome plugin here:

  10. It’s unfortunate that this plugin was abandoned. The BP Activity Privacy plugin we’re now directed to can NOT achieve the same setup that this plugin provided. It has two major issues…

    1) Privacy in that plugin is set when POSTING, not when VIEWING. That means that if some random person decides to post an update to everyone then I see it in my feed even if I am not friends with them.

    2) It only works for select actions, such as posting an update. Things like changing profile picture or adding a new friend can not have their privacy changed with the plugin which means they will show up in everyone’s feed, friend or not.