In a move intended to give some privacy control back to users, Facebook began testing disappearing text-only status updates this week.
This feature is a throwback to an earlier era of Facebook, before users’ Newsfeeds were dominated by videos and articles. These new status updates will let users post 101-character messages that will disappear from the site after a short while (similar to Snapchat photos, an app Facebook has copied before). But users can also choose to make the statuses permanent if they want.
“We’re testing an update that lets people set a temporary status on their profile to let friends know what they’re doing or feeling in the moment,” a Facebook spokesperson told BuzzFeed. “People have the option to set an expiration date for the status and choose whether or not it appears in News Feed or only on their profile.”
The new disappearing statuses are currently being tested globally, and hopefully the function rolls out widely across the platform soon. The social media giant will undoubtedly take public flack for copying one of its primary rivals, but this feature is still a net positive. Because even though this is a small feature, it’s still a good thing to provide Facebook users with more privacy-friendly posting options. Remember to always post responsibly…just because the post may expire, nothing is truly ever gone in the digital world. Anything you post can come back to haunt you!