Facebook has announced that Chats in Facebook Groups will no longer be available from August 22. This change will not affect regular Messenger Group Chats with friends.
In October, we reported that Facebook was rolling out a new chat feature within Groups that allowed Group members to start chats with each other by clicking on “Start Chat” within a new Chats tab at the top of Group pages.
The chats themselves – available for up to 250 members at a time for text (and 50 members for audio or video) would take place in Messenger, not some other environment.
Now, Facebook is removing this feature altogether. Starting last Friday (16/8), the option to start new chats in a Facebook Group is now no longer available. This Thursday, August 22, all existing Chats within Facebook Groups will cease. In a post, Facebook explains that they will “still be readable, but you will no longer be able to chat further.”
While Facebook acknowledges that “it’s really valuable to communities on Facebook to be able to communicate in real-time,” its “current product infrastructure doesn’t support Chats in Groups directly in the Facebook app,” and “can no longer support the feature.”
In any case, Facebook is still looking for ways to keep real-time communication within Facebook Groups. The company did not share any details about “those future plans.” If you’re wondering about how this change will impact your regular group chats in Messenger with friends and family, you shouldn’t worry. It won’t.
Facebook says that only chats in Facebook Groups are affected: “You will still be able to start a group chat with anyone who you are friends with or are connected to in Messenger.”
To look for and find previous Chats in a Facebook Group, users can simply search within Messenger with the group chat name or the name of a member of the Chat. However, on August 22, members of chats in Facebook Groups will look like they’re all “leaving” the chat.
This will be the sign that the chat is being archived – not that the members have chosen to leave.
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