Let's be honest: we have all said things once on-line of which we later regretted: either an unpleasant gossip or messages sent to the wrong recipient (not to mention those outbursts of honesty that we send at dawn, after a night of partying and drinks). But thanks to a recent update the ability to delete messages in Facebook Messenger for both parties is finally available. And while it's not infallible, a quick reaction usually means that your message doesn't reach its recipient. As if it never existed. Great, right?
You can also archive and delete entire threads that you no longer want to see. Deleting Facebook messages from your desktop or mobile device takes only a few seconds, but deleting complete conversations applies only to your own inbox, not those of your friends. Here we explain how to do it.
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Delete messages on your desktop
Step 1: Log in to Facebook as you normally would.
Step 2: click on the chat bubble in the upper right corner, and then on See everything in Messenger. The last option is in the lower left.
Step 3: to delete a complete message, move the cursor over the conversation and click on the gear cone in the lower right corner. Then press Remove.
Step 4: You will be presented with three options: Cancel, Delete or Archive. Click on Remove to continue.
Step 5: To delete a part of your conversation, click on the conversation and move the cursor over the message you want to delete. Then, click on the three horizontal points and press Remove.
Step 6: If less than 10 minutes have passed since you sent the message, you will be given the option to delete the message for everyone or just for you. Once you have made your selection, press Remove.
The person at the other end of the conversation will see that you deleted a message if you chose the option for everyone, but the content of the message will no longer be available. If more than ten minutes have passed, you can only delete the message for yourself.
Delete messages on your mobile device
Step 1: If you have not already done so, download the Messenger application for iOS or Android and log in as you normally would.
Step 2:If you want to delete a complete conversation, press and hold the thread or scroll left and select the red trash can. You will be given the option to hide the chat or delete it permanently.
Hidden chats can still be found using the search bar at the top of the home page, but you won't be able to see them in your chat lists until you send another message.
Step 3: If you only want to delete a message, enter the conversation, press and hold the message you want to delete and select Remove on the bottom.
If it has been less than 10 minutes since you sent the message, you will be given the option to delete it for everyone or just for you. Once you have made your selection, press Remove. The person at the other end of the conversation may see that you deleted a message if you chose the option for everyone, but the content will no longer be available. If more than ten minutes have passed, you can only delete the message for yourself.
* Article updated on August 23, 2019 by Daniel Matus.