Your Facebook groups now have group chats and audio calls


Facebook Messenger rooms
Facebook Messenger rooms
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Facebook groups have been a popular way to connect with people on a specific topic or interest for years. Facebook now allows Groups to enable new communication features that mimic Discord and Telegram.

Facebook is now testing a new sidebar on the left side of the mobile apps, which shows all the groups you’ve joined and recent activity (such as new posts and messages). You also have the option to ‘pin’ groups, which moves them to the top of the list. The sidebar looks like a batch like what you’d see on Discord, Slack, and other group-based messaging services.

Image of Facebook groups with sidebar

However, this not all. Facebook now also allows groups to create chat channels and voice channels, along with the typical feed that group members can post to. Text chats can be accessed in both Facebook groups and Facebook Messenger, and function like Telegram channels or IRC rooms. Audio channels work like group calls that anyone can join or leave at any time, similar to voice channels on Discord.

The new functionality shows that Facebook is trying to mimic popular services like Discord and Telegram, whose popularity has grown rapidly in recent years. That could help bring people back to Facebook (or keep people from switching), but it remains to be seen how many groups are interested in running live chats. Discord has struggled to keep up with spam and abuse on popular servers, and Facebook is still experimenting with changes to Groups to reduce rapidly spreading misinformation.

Source: Facebook News