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Facebook Messenger solves caller ID

One of Facebook's best-kept secrets is the "Other inbox." This is the inbox where messages go if you aren't friends with the person sending them.

While most of us are fine not seeing unwanted messages, there are plenty of stories about people getting a message from a long-lost friend or relative, and they never see it. In fact, we've had readers in our own audience find out they had important messages from years ago that they never saw. So it's a good thing Facebook is finally killing the hidden inbox. What it's doing instead, though, is just as interesting.

Facebook's new system is called "Message Requests" and it allows someone you don't know to send you a message. At first that sounds scary and intrusive, but Facebook has some smarts built into the system.

When you get a message from someone you don't know, you'll see a "Message Request" option appear in the Facebook Messages area or Facebook Messenger. Go into it to see what requests you have waiting.

You'll get the message, along with background information about the person sending it. If you don't want to reply to a person, just ignore or delete the message and Facebook makes sure you never hear from that person again.

Next page: What if you do reply?
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