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Facebook Group users offered a new stalker pass

Although potentially useful, Facebook’s new feature comes across as a free stalker pass for groups.

facebook groups

facebook groups

New Facebook Group feature

According to social media giant, Facebook, starting today, “when you visit a group, you can view who’s seen each post. This way you can stay updated on the group’s activity.”

The company explains that “Facebook groups are spaces where you can share things with the people who care about them most. You can use groups to connect with important sets of people like your family, soccer team or book club,” adding through an example that their core function is to measure who is seeing what in a group. “For example, in your soccer group you can post the new practice time and then see who got the update.”

Facebook has not released much information yet about the functionality, so speculation is swirling – is it just admins of a group who see what items have been reviewed, or is it anyone? Will this encourage gaming of the system by adding another value system outside of just likes and comments? How does it count if something is seen? Is it marked as “seen” if it is scrolled past on a user’s news feed, or in the group? How can Facebook determine if something has been seen or if it was part of a screen someone skimmed?

Through Facebook’s illustration, the feature is available on the web interface along with the mobile interface:

What is most fascinating is that the spy apps that say “see who looked at your profile” or “who is looking at your group” have been deemed as junk by Facebook who historically has asserted that no third party can report these numbers, and alas, their firm assertions have been made clear in that only Facebook can tell you this information.

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Although useful for group admins, this mostly feels like a free stalker pass for groups to obsess over, and could potentially hurt groups, as people guard their privacy – don’t you watch your competitor? Do they need to know how actively you monitor them? On the flip side, wouldn’t it be nice to have this feature to gauge what your groups are actually actively consuming?

The image created above is in jest, no one is calling Zuck a stalker.

Written By

Marti Trewe reports on business and technology news, chasing his passion for helping entrepreneurs and small businesses to stay well informed in the fast paced 140-character world. Marti rarely sleeps and thrives on reader news tips, especially about startups and big moves in leadership.

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