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Facebook to test $1 to send message to user not on friends list

21 December 2012

Facebook screenStarting today, December 21st, Facebook will let a select few users to test out a system of sending messages to strangers for the price of $1 but only in the US. The move is akin to the one employed by LinkedIn, whereby users pay a monthly fee to send messages to those they are not friends with.

Facebook has also updated its filters for messaging, where users have two options; strict or basic. The strict version sends only friend messages to the Inbox, and from strangers will go into the ‘Other’ folder, where they can go unnoticed or unread. The idea is that if someone is not a friend then they can pay to have the message delivered straight to the Inbox. Having a fee will also cut the number of spam sent and received, says Facebook on their company news page, “Several commentators and researchers have noted that imposing a financial cost on the sender may be the most effective way to discourage unwanted messages and facilitate delivery of messages that are relevant and useful.”

Facebook message filter

Facebook think that it would be important way of sending in some situations. These can be for people who have seen someone they want to get in touch with about a job opportunity, or contact someone who is not yet their friend for urgent communication. A user can only recieve one message per week and no more than three a month. Its unclear if this feature will come to other regions, that could depend on a successful trial run.

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