Is sending a Facebook message to someone worth a dollar to you or your company? Well, Facebook announced Thursday that it is testing a new service to charge users a one-time fee of $1 to send a message to another user’s inbox on the network with whom they aren’t friends.
Facebook calls the little charge an economic signal to determine relevance. I call it “selling my inbox”. On a blog post, they say “This test will give a small number of people the option to pay to have a message routed to the Inbox rather than the Other folder of a recipient that they are not connected with.” The test will be limited roll-out. And they will not allow brand to participate “at the moment”.
If this sounds familiar, it is. LinkedIn has a premium service that allows you to connect with folks to whom you are not connected. Seems like Facebook is trying to make everything a way to monetize the business.
Mashable says currently, if you send a Facebook message to someone you’re not connected to, it may end up in the Other tab, an oft-overlooked subsection of the inbox that basically serves as a spam folder, depending on whether you have mutual connections. With the new option, however, you would be able to pay a premium to ensure that the message ends up in the main inbox where it’s likely to be seen by the recipient.