Updated Messenger Platform Policies and Faster Review Times

At Messenger, we’re committed to enabling high-quality experiences for developers, businesses, and the people they serve. Today, we’re launching new policies for the Messenger Platform as well as a faster review process. These updated policies will provide more defined engagement models on the platform, including time-based criteria for businesses to respond to messages and standards for subscriptions in Messenger (find out more here).

With this update, we have opened the Messenger Platform for standard messaging. We will continue to test subscription messaging, to learn more about people’s subscription preferences before fully opening up this capability.  This policy update will also create a more streamlined review process for app submissions, with a review time of five days or less.

We continue to put people in control of their experiences in Messenger. All conversations between businesses and people must be initiated by the person receiving the messages, who can then mute or block the business at any time . You can find out more about these controls here.

OVERVIEW OF NEW PLATFORM POLICY

Introducing a 24 Hour Window for Standard Messaging

Businesses and developers using the Send/Receive API will now have up to 24 hours to respond to a message initiated by a person in Messenger, when using standard messaging. There is also an allowance to send one message after the 24 hour window. Each time a person responds to a business through one of the eligible actions  listed in the chart below, the clock will reset. This new policy allows businesses to re-engage an inactive user, while also providing people with more relevant and timely information that they requested.

Other details on the policy for standard messaging include:

  • If a business or developer is providing live chat support through the Send/Receive API, this is also subject to this new policy. If a business or developer is unable to respond within the 24 hour window (for instance, if they are offline or an issue takes longer to resolve), they have the ability to respond with one additional message outside of the 24 hour window.
  • The restriction on promotional content has been removed for standard messaging.
  • Specific templates — including receipts and airline templates – can be sent beyond the 24-hour mark.
  • As always, a person must initiate contact with a business or developer, such as by clicking on the “Get Started” button in the welcome screen, clicking on a “Send to Messenger” plugin, or sending a message. People continue to have the option to block or mute a conversation with a business or developer at any time.

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Testing Subscription Messaging For Specific Use Cases

Subscription messaging allows a business or developer to send regular content to a person. The recipient must opt into receive subscription messaging

Details on the policy for subscription messaging include:

  • Subscription content can be sent outside of the 24 hour period.
  • Subscription messaging must be opted into by a recipient.
  • No promotional content can be sent with subscription messaging. Subscription messaging is only intended for specific use cases and, at time of submission, businesses will need to indicate which use case their experience falls under.
  • If a user responds to a subscription message via one of the eligible actions listed below, then that shifts the conversation into standard messaging and all eligible rules apply.
  • Use cases that are eligible for subscription messaging include:
    • News: Bots whose primary purpose is to inform people about recent or important events or information in categories such as sports, finance, business, real estate, weather, traffic, politics, and entertainment.
    • Productivity: Bots whose primary purpose is to enable people to manage their personal productivity with tasks such as managing calendar events, receiving reminders, and paying bills.
    • Personal trackers: Bots that enable people to receive and monitor information about themselves in categories such as fitness, health, wellness, and finance.

We will continue to review the subscription messaging beta, and will keep you informed of any changes. New subscription messaging use cases will need to apply for a new permission,pages_messaging_subscriptions. See the details below for more information on how this impacts existing subscription integrations.

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FASTER REVIEWS TIMES AND APPROVALS

With the launch of the new Messenger Platform policies, we have streamlined our review process and will now review all applications within five days of submission.

The review process for new and existing Send/Receive API integrations is as follows:

  • New Send/Receive API Integrations:
    • Businesses and developers with a new Send/Receive API integration should go through the review flow to submit their standard or subscription messaging experience.
  • Existing Send/Receive API Integrations:
    • Standard Messaging: Existing businesses or developers on the Send/Receive API are automatically approved for standard messaging and have 3 months to comply with the standard messaging rules.
    • Subscription Messaging: Businesses or developers with existing subscription messaging integrations will have 3 months to comply with subscription messaging rules and 6 months to submit their experience for the new subscription permission. During the submission process, they will need to self-select into one of the approved use cases and agree to not send promotional messages. If these businesses or developers have not applied for the subscription messaging permission after 6 months, they will automatically be defaulted to standard messaging.

To see the policies in more detail, click here.

 

COMPARISON OF MESSAGING TYPES

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MESSENGER PLATFORM POLICY FAQS

  • How can people manage which businesses and bots can contact them in Messenger?
    • All experiences in Messenger are opted into by people via one of the following actions:
      • Send a message to a business in Messenger
      • Tap “Get Started” from a businesses’ Messenger Welcome Screen
      • Agree to get updates from a business, like during checkout on their website via a plugin or signing up for SMS alerts
  • How can people control the messages they receive in Messenger?
    • We offer multiple controls throughout Messenger to customize the experience and ensure people are only messaging with the people and businesses they care about.
    • There are several ways for people to maintain control over their experiences, within Messenger, such as blocking a person or business, deleting the conversation or muting the thread. These controls are available for bots as well.
  • How can people block a business?
    • We make it very easy for people to block a business right within the app. People can block a business by clicking ‘Block Messages’ in the ‘Manage Messages’ settings or by deleting a thread with a business.
  • Can a bot include both subscription messaging and standard platform messaging?
    • Yes, a bot can include both types of messaging. A person will have to trigger the standard platform messaging via one of the eligible triggers and will need to opt into receive subscription messaging.
  • What happens if a business messages a user more than once beyond the 24-hour policy in stan
    • Bots will not technically be able to message users more than once beyond the 24-hour window (message will not be sent). During the transition period for existing bots, these messages will go through but will be flagged if found.
  • Where can I learn more about these policies?
    • To see the full set of policies, click here.
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