Picture this: It’s 3 a.m. You’re tired but can’t sleep. You’ve decided to click around Wikipedia and you learn about the fascinating mating habits of penguins. With your newfound trivia knowledge, you decide to send a tidbit to your best friend via Facebook Messenger.
Instead, you message your former grad school professor.
Soon, your weird early morning messages could be a thing of the past. That’s because Facebook has introduced a feature that will allow you to remove a message up to 10 minutes after you first hit “send.”
With Facebook Messenger’s “unsend” feature, within the 10-minute window, you will be able to delete any unintended message or note you wish you had never sent in the first place. This could include that GIF you sent to your ex accidentally, an incorrect address you shared with your book club or the note you forwarded to the completely wrong thread.
Facebook first introduced the tool back in April, after the social media platform was caught quietly deleting messages sent by its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg. The feature, though, is not yet active — it was only listed as “coming soon” in the release notes for the newest Messenger app update on Tuesday, Nov. 6.
Yet, while the new tool may excite Facebook users, some have also raised concerns over its implications. Tech experts back in April warned that the feature may be used to erase evidence of harassment and abuse and, in turn, encourage an uptick in offensive behavior online.
Still, even with the possibility of nefarious use, Messenger’s “unsend” feature will be heaven-sent for users who send accidental messages more than they care to admit.
So, if you had the tool handy, what messages would you delete?