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Facebook is trying to bring chat rooms back with this new Groups feature

This sounds a lot like old-school AOL chatrooms, but less cool.

Facebook private posts facebook groups
Image: Reuters

The millions of Facebook Groups and its members now have a new way to chat with one another. There’s now Messenger integration, which allows members to talk in real time, according to TechCrunch.

Starting today, Oct. 11, Facebook is gradually rolling out the new feature that will allow group chats about specific sub-topics. At launch, each group chat is limited to 250 members. The same feature will let up to 50 members to start an audio or video call from the same location.

As an example, TechCrunch explains:

A dog owners’ Group could spawn threads for discussing spontaneous park meetups, grooming tips or sharing photos as their puppies grow up. Chat for Groups could make Facebook’s discussion forums more real-time and engaging, strengthening loyalty to one of the social network’s most differentiated features.

You get a Group, you get a Group, everyone gets a Group

The built-in messaging could also help Facebook reach its goal of getting 1 billion people into what it calls “meaningful Groups. TechCrunch notes that there are 1.4 billion people active in Facebook Groups each month, across tens of millions of active Groups. With the new chat feature, Facebook expects users could “plan events, arrange in-person meetings, or have deeper discussions.”

TechCrunch rightly concludes: “With all the scandals plaguing its reputation and concerns that it polarizes the populace, Facebook is eager to find more ways to show it actually brings people together.”

Those of a certain age remember AOL chat rooms and Facebook Group messaging sounds similar. Nonetheless, I do wonder about security and whether these type of chats will be protected from wandering eyes. My best guess: LOL LOL LOL.

Would you consider chatting with a large group on Facebook? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below. 

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Bryan considers himself a well-rounded techie, having written articles for MakeUseOf, KnowTechie, AppAdvice, iDownload Blog. When he's not writing, he's being a single dad and rooting for his alma mater, Penn State, or cheering on the Patriots.

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