What would you be willing to pay to ensure that a message you sent someone on Facebook reached their inbox? I mean their real inbox – not that “other” message folder that houses all the spam. Would you pay a dollar? How about two dollars? If it was a really important message, would you pay five dollars?
What about $100? Holy hell I know, right? $100? To simply put your message in a more visible position? Apparently, some users are being given the option to send a message to Mark Zuckerberg’s inbox for that price.
That figure is part of a small test subset that Facebook is running to test their new paid messages feature that they first unveiled to the public back in December. Back then, Facebook launched the paid messages test, which gives users the ability to pay a small fee (at the time $1) to ensure that their messages reach other users’ inboxes – instead of winding up in the “other” messages folder that nobody ever really checks. The “other” folder is pretty much Facebook’s version of an email spam folder.
The paid messages would only become an option when users try to message other users outside their network (friends or friends of friends). Facebook said that it would be a way to cut back on spam, saying:
“Several commentators and researchers have noted that imposing a financial cost on the sender may be the most effective way to discourage unwanted messages and facilitate delivery of messages that are relevant and useful.”
But, it could also be seen as Facebook letting people pay to spam your inbox. And maybe that’s why Facebook is testing a $100 price point to send a single message. “We are testing some extreme price points to see what works to filter spam,” Facebook told Mashable, who first spotted the extreme test.
It’s unlikely that Facebook would rollout $100 messaging options globally; this is clearly what they said it is – and extreme test. But it’s interesting to see what the company is doing to test the spam-blasting capabilities of the new product.