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If you use Facebook Messenger, you might be surprised to find out that the app has been hiding some of your messages. Many users all over the world have expressed similar reactions — ranging from mild amusement to outrage — when they realized that they haven’t been receiving all their messages.

By now, you’re most likely familiar with how the app works: your friends send you a message, it gets sent to your Inbox, and Facebook notifies you about it. But it’s different when the person who sends you a message isn’t one of your Facebook friends or is someone with whom you haven’t had an online conversation. In this case, Facebook sends the message to a folder named “Message Requests”, in a bid to keep spam away from your regular Inbox and ensure it won’t bother you.

Ideally, Messenger will inform you that you have an unread item in the Message Requests folder. However, it seems that this isn’t always the case: Facebook will notify you about only if it “thinks” that you know the person who sent the message. Otherwise, the message end up in still another folder called “Filtered Messages”, where it will stay unread until you discover how to access it. This isn’t a problem if the message is actually spam but, in many cases, the messages that end up unread are from real-life friends, family, old classmates, former colleagues, and other people who have something important to say.



So How Do You Access the Folder?

If you’re on the Facebook Messenger app, go to “Settings”, tap “People”, then tap “Message Requests”. Here, you’ll see messages which are usually from people you know, although there could also be some spam. Underneath everything, you’ll find “See filtered requests”; tap it to see a second set of messages that the Facebook algorithm considers to be spam. The algorithm is usually right, but you might still find a stray message or two from a friend or family member in the “Filtered Messages” folder.

If you’re using the desktop version of Facebook, simply go to your Messages, click “Message Requests”, and scroll through the messages that have ended up in this folder. The “See filtered requests” link sits below the messages and, just like with the app, clicking it leads you to the messages that Facebook has filtered.

If you want to reply to messages either in the “Message Requests” or “Filtered Messages” folder, you’ll need to “accept” their request before you can have a conversation with them.

Other News: Business Suggestions in Messenger

Eagle-eyed Facebook users have noticed not just the hidden folders and messages but also another development with the Messenger app. Biz Carson of Business Insider noted the app is starting to give suggestions of businesses that users can chat with. These suggestions, which include up to 20 businesses, pop up when users tap the “Search for people and groups” search bar. They populate even before the user does a search and are arranged in a scrollable carousel.

Carson noted that the new feature included only a small sampling of businesses and that not all of the suggested businesses had chat as an option. These show that the feature is most likely still in the experimental stage and that Facebook is testing it with a selected group of users.

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