I wrote about this before when we were calling them Facebook’s Hidden Messages but they are now called Other Messages and, when you click on your Messages tab in the left hand sidebar of the Home page of your personal profile, you will see the two options.
UPDATE – For the last few months, people have been able to pay to put messages into your main Inbox on Facebook. The way it works is that, if you are the friend of someone or the friend of a friend of someone and you message them, your message will go into the inbox. If you are outside of their network, your message will go to their Other inbox.
Unless you pay Facebook to make sure it goes into their main inbox. This option to pay will come up when you try to message someone who is not in your network.
It now costs 66p per message for normal people – down from 79p earlier in the year. For celebs, it can be as much as £10 – that was an example which was being quoted to send a message to the main Inbox of Tom Daley, the diver.
You can either select the recommended Basic option where you will ‘Mostly see messages from friends or people you may know’ so that would include Friends of Friends but anyone else will be consigned to Other – the equivalent of a spam filter.
Or you can choose the Strict Filtering option which will mean that you will see communications from ‘Mostly see messages from friends. Messages from people you want to hear from may go to your Other folder.’ This means that people you may actually want to hear from could be dumped into Other and, unless you remember to check it regularly, important notices might not be seen.
As Facebook admit, they do sometimes get it wrong – you may get messages in your Inbox that are from the friend of a friend who is messaging a group of mutual friends or a member of a group you’re in who messages you might end up in. You could also hear from a friend who isn’t on Facebook and uses your contact info to send you a message via the Facebook Messenger app (more on that in the future).
When filters won’t make any difference – ‘Paid’ Messaging
And, of course, the real one that makes you sit up and take notice – messages may appear in your Inbox from people to whom you are not connected on Facebook but who have paid to ensure that their message is routed to your Inbox rather than your Other folder.
Well, that sounds as if businesses are going to be able to pay to put stuff into your Inbox…?
Isn’t that what we might call spamming?
See the UPDATE above.