Facebook Developing Promoted Messages?

Developer Tom Waddington might want to add “code sleuth” to his title: After discovering references to the Facebook want button and potential social commerce initiatives within the social network’s code, Waddington has now unearthed references to promotions within Facebook messages.

Waddington outlined three elements he discovered within Facebook’s code, and how he believes each could be used, in a post on his blog.

  • PAID_PROMOTION: Waddington believes this could allow Facebook to display email icons for messages received via email, or cell phone icons for those received via mobile devices, enabling the social network to collect data on how messages are being sent and received.
  • promotion:promoted and promotion:demoted: These message tags join those already in use for Facebook messages, including spam, archive, sent, and read, and Waddington believes promotion:promoted, and promotion:demoted refer to promoted messages being sent and flagged as uninteresting, respectively.
  • is_promoted and is_demoted: Similar to the tags mentioned above, Waddington believes these tags can be used to add the correct annotations to messages in the user interface, enabling brands to maintain consistency in their messaging.

He concluded:

It’s possible I’m getting confused somewhere along the line, but it feels like somewhere at Facebook, somebody has been busy with promoted messages. I wonder if and when it’ll be released!

Readers: What will the reaction be if Facebook users begin receiving promoted messages?

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

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