How To Not Share Moments in WeChat
WeChat Moments are like Instagram or Snapchat Stories. They complement the usual posts to add a little flavor, share a little more about your life or offer interest to friends or WeChat users at large. While the default settings are open to the public, you do have control over who sees your WeChat Moments.
Controlling who sees your WeChat Moments feeds into the wider conversation about privacy on social media. As well as showing you how to manage permissions for your Moments, I’ll also show you some of the other privacy settings you may want to know if you use WeChat.
Control who sees your WeChat Moments
By default, Moments in WeChat are shared publicly. Anyone who uses the app could theoretically find them and read them. That’s probably fine for the most part but there might be some Moments you want to keep more private. Any that show where you live or work, where you hang out, any identifiable features or anything you would like to keep discreet could be kept more private with a simple setting.
Let’s create a Moment so you can see where to set permissions:
- Open WeChat and select Discover at the bottom of the main page.
- Select Moments from the next page.
- Select the camera icon in the top right.
- Select Take Photo or Choose Existing to use a gallery image.
- Add a caption in the text box that appears on screen.
- Select Location, Share to or @Mention as required.
- Select Post in the top right of the screen.
It is where you see Share to in Step 6 that you control who sees your WeChat Moments. If you select that setting, you can choose from Public, Private, Share List and Do Not Share List.
Public means all your friends can see your Moment. Private means only you can see it and nobody else. Share List means you can manually select friends who can see it. Do Not Share List is a blacklist you can create to exclude specific friends.
Modifying this setting allows you to control who see each Moment on an individual basis. You can also set global permissions for your account if you prefer.
Global controls for WeChat Moments
You can modify your general WeChat account settings to restrict who gets to see your Moments. Your options are to stop your Moments being publicly accessible by non-friends and to control who sees them from within your friends list.
WeChat allows anyone to see your last ten Moments whether they are friends or not. You can stop this with a simple setting.
- Navigate to Me in WeChat.
- Select Settings and Privacy.
- Toggle off Make My Moments Public.
Your Moments will still be accessible to friends but will remove this last ten setting.
You can also set permissions for Moments from within the same Privacy menu.
- Select Hide My Posts to create a blacklist of friends you don’t want to see your Moments. You will see a list of your WeChat friends. Select one to add them to the blacklist. The friends you add to this list will not be able to see any future Moments you post.
- Select Hide User’s Moments for the opposite. This creates a list of WeChat friends whose Moments you don’t want to see.
- Select Viewable by Others to control who can see Moments already published. This stops any of your friends viewing historical Moments. You can select from 3 days, 6 months or All to restrict Moments in those time periods.
Other privacy settings you might like to use in WeChat
From my experience, WeChat seems no better or worse than other social networks when it comes to privacy. There are rumors around Chinese state surveillance but those are unconfirmed. The app itself offers a few privacy settings you might like to check out.
All are accessible from the same Privacy menu.
- Select Friend Confirmation to stop randoms from adding you as a friend without your say so.
- Select Add Me as a Friend to control whether people can add you using QR code or WeChat ID.
- Select Block List and add annoying people to it.
Those, along with the Moment settings already discussed should make WeChat a much more pleasant place to spend time. Friend Confirmation on its own can transform your experience as it can filter out the randoms and spammers who like to friend everyone they can find. Depending on where you live and how visible your profile is, that can save you a lot of hassle on the app.
Do you have any privacy tips for WeChat? Any tips for avoiding the spammers on the app? Tell us below if you do!