Facebook is building an Instagram-style Close Friends feature
Facebook is developing a new feature for Messenger that will allow you to share content with a limited circle of close friends. The function, currently under development under the name “Favorites”, was first discovered by application researcher Jane Manchun Wong, before Facebook confirmed its existence directly to TechCrunch. It is a similar approach to the “Close Friends” feature of Instagram, which the Facebook-owned network launched last year.
Facebook Favorites will allow you to manually designate certain friends to be in your inner circle. Then, whenever you have a story or a camera post that you want to share with Messenger, you can send it to this list. It is an intermediate point between letting all your friends see the content published in your Facebook story or sending it privately to people by direct message. However, unlike Instagram, Facebook says the feature is not a way to restrict who sees your real Facebook story.
Favorites seem to be an attempt to encourage people to share more on Facebook, without worrying about a growing list of casual acquaintances accumulated over the years. It’s a problem we were writing about in 2014 and, if my own Facebook friends list is an indication, the problem has only gotten worse in later years.
The function also aligns with the attempts of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to convert the company’s social networks into a more privacy-focused communications platform that is the digital equivalent of a living room rather than a plaza. the city.
Facebook already has a similar feature called Friends Lists, which allows you to classify your Facebook friends into Close, known and restricted Friends. However, it seems that Favorites could offer a simpler approach, with a single list of favorite friends to cultivate, similar to the Instagram approach.
The new Facebook Favorites feature is currently in the prototyping stage, and it is early enough that the company has not even officially started testing it internally. That means it could change a lot before watching an official release, if it ever launches.