Don’t want to approve that new friend request because you don’t know the person well enough? Rather than clicking “Ignore” as was previously the case, Facebook is switching the button to “Not Now” and simply hiding the request indefinitely. Users can then choose to go back to those friend requests at a later date by clicking on “View Hidden Requests” on their requests page.
The shift is for a number of reasons. First, ignoring a friend request sometimes resulted in the person who made the request seeing that they can request a friend again. The result was that the user would once again see the ability to request the friendship. Now, if you click on “Not Now”, the person who you ignored will see “Awaiting Friend Confirmation” anytime they visit your profile. This is a relatively significant move for Facebook has the friend rejection has long played a significant role in social interactions among users.
If a person receives a request from someone they don’t know, Facebook will now give you the opportunity to report that individual. By letting Facebook know that they don’t know the individual, it will prevent the user from sending friend requests in the future. The improvement is an attempt at preventing abuse, especially as Facebook has seen a rise of spam accounts created in recent months.