Facebook has announced a new ‘vanish mode’ on Messenger and Instagram that lets you send spontaneous messages that disappear automatically.
There are times when you just want to send a spontaneous message saying something “in the moment” without fearing that it will come back to haunt you. That’s why Facebook is introducing a new vanish mode in Messenger and Instagram that lets you send messages that disappear automatically when the recipient has seen them or when they leave the chat.
To turn on vanish mode, all you have to do is swipe up on your mobile device within an existing chat. Swiping up again takes you back to the normal mode in the chat. The first time you turn on the feature, you will get an information screen that explains it and how to stay safe when using it.
I’m sure everyone will have a different reason to use this feature, but Facebook explains that you can use it to “send memes, GIFs, stickers or reactions to share what you really think when you can’t find the words, or just be silly with your friends without it staying in your chat history.”
Facebook says that vanish mode is designed with safety in mind, and users get the choice to turn it on or off. We all know that the fact that a message vanishes isn’t a guarantee that someone can’t screenshot it. If, however, someone screenshots a chat while in vanish mode, you will be notified, and you can always either block another user or report a conversation if you feel unsafe.
Vanish mode is slowly rolling out on Messenger and Instagram. It is now available on Messenger in the US and a few other countries, but it will soon be expanded to new countries and Instagram. You’ll have to update to the latest version of the apps to see if it’s available to you within the new combined Messenger experience.
Earlier this month, Facebook-owned WhatsApp also rolled out a new disappearing messages feature.