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News Nugget – Facebook launches messaging system

Facebook calls time on traditional email. Sort of

Had enough of Facebook? CEO Mark Zuckerberg doesn’t think so. He’s just announced yet another arrow in the pervasive social network’s full-to-bursting quiver.

This time it’s a “modern messaging system” that won’t replace your existing email (so much for the Gmail killer) but aims to pull all your text-based communication into one place – Facebook messages, SMS, MSN, Gmail… it may even do Skype in future.

You’ll get an @facebook.com email address, but you’ll be able to pull messages from third-party email and chat clients, too, with Facebook threading your conversations and prioritising your inbox according to the people you’re closest to. Theoretically, you can create a spam-free inbox (as long as you don’t mind non-FB friends being cast aside).

Another major difference is that replying to emails (or anything else) will adopt the ‘hit return’ feel of instant messaging. In fact, Facebook’s strategy is very much based on the idea that all your textual communications become more conversation-like. Is that a good thing? We’ll all see soon enough.

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