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Facebook introduces new tools to curb harassment

According to Facebook post users can now ignore a Messenger conversation and automatically move it out of their inbox, without having to block the sender.

Taking cognizance of online harassment, Facebook has announced launch of two new tools to prevent harassment on Facebook and in Messenger as part of its ongoing efforts to build a safe community.

Facebook introduced these tools after getting feedback from people who use Facebook, as well as organizations representing groups who disproportionately experience harassment like women and journalists.

According to Facebook post users can now ignore a Messenger conversation and automatically move it out of their inbox, without having to block the sender.

“The newly introduced help prevent unwanted contact like friend requests and messages when someone a user blocked sets up a new account or tries to contact you from another account they control,”added the post.

These new features for personal profiles give people additional ways to manage their experience on Facebook.

Preventing unwanted contact

Facebook is also building on existing features that prevent fake and inauthentic accounts on Facebook.

These automated features help us identify fake accounts more quickly and block millions of them at registration every day. However, sometimes a new account created by someone who was previously blocked might not get caught by these features.

Facebook is using various signals (like an IP address) to help us proactively recognize this type of account and prevent its owner from sending a message or friend request to the person who blocked the original account. The person who blocked the original account is in control, and must initiate contact with the new account in order for them to interact normally.

Ignoring messages

If someone is being harassed, blocking the abuser sometimes prompts additional harassment, particularly offline. We’ve also heard from groups that work with survivors of domestic violence that being able to see messages is often a valuable tool to assess if there is risk of additional abuse.

Now, users can tap on a message to ignore the conversation. This disables notifications and moves the conversation from your inbox to your Filtered Messages folder.

Users can read messages in the conversation without the sender seeing if they’ve been read. This feature is now available for one on one conversations and will soon be available broadly for group messages, too.

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