Just after a teasing from last week, Facebook today has officially started releasing this new feature called “Unsend” into their popular messaging app for iOS. This feature is only coming out in select countries for now, but TechCrunch is highlighting exactly how it will work for Messenger users.
First off, you have 10 minutes after the original message was sent to delete or edit your message. In addition to this, Facebook will retain a copy of any unsent message for a certain period of time to make sure the message did not contain any policy violations.
In order to actually access this new functionality, Facebook is calling it “Remove” so you simply have to long press on a message in the Messenger app. From there, you will see options to copy the message, remove it, forward it, and translate it. Choosing the “Remove” option will display a prompt that asks if you would like to remove the message for everyone or just yourself.
Lastly, in Facebook Messenger, there will be a display of a notice offering more detail on what happens when you remove a message:
“You’ll need to permanently remove the message for all chat members. This way they can see you removed a message and can still report it”.
As the popup indicates, when you delete a message in Facebook Messenger, the app will display a notice in the thread indicating that “you removed this message”, which is visible to everyone in the group, respectively.
Facebook’s head of Messenger Stan Chudnovsky offered some color on the feature in an interview with TechCrunch.
“The pros of this feature are that a user wants to be in control, and if you make a mistake you can correct it. There are also a lot of legitimate use cases out there that we wanted to enable for users. We also need to make sure that we actually don’t open up any new venues for bullying as well. We also need to make sure that people are not sending you any bad messages and then removing them because if you report them and the messages aren’t there we can’t do anything”.
To start off, Facebook is rolling out support for unsending messages in Poland, Bolivia, Colombia, and Lithuania. Facebook also hopes to roll this feature out globally as soon as they possibly can, though the details are unclear at the moment.