http://www.digitaljournal.com/tech-and-science/technology/facebook-launches-messenger-reactions-and-mentions/article/488624

Facebook launches Messenger Reactions and Mentions

Posted Mar 23, 2017 by James Walker
Facebook has announced it is bringing its Reactions feature to Messenger. Reactions let you respond to a message with an emoji that signifies your feeling. The company is also launching Mentions for Messenger to include other people in a chat.
Facebook Messenger
Facebook Messenger
Facebook
Reactions
Facebook launched Reactions over a year ago, replacing the "Like" button with a new array of options covering "Love," "Wow," "Angry," "Sad" and "Haha." The company says the emoji allow people to express themselves more succinctly online, letting users distinguish between different levels of emotion.
Facebook Messenger
Facebook Messenger
Facebook
From today, Reactions are also available in Messenger. When you receive a message from a friend, you'll be able to react to it with an emoji, immediately showing a response and your opinion. In the same way Reactions expanded on the Like button on Facebook, it will evolve Messenger's own "like" sticker to let you acknowledge messages more directly.
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For now, there isn't a dedicated button to access Reactions in Messenger. Instead, you have to press and hold on a message to display the new reactions menu. Tapping one of the emoji will assign it to the message. The sender will be able to see the reaction through an animation displayed in the conversation.
Facebook Messenger
Facebook Messenger
Facebook
Facebook suggested Reactions will be most useful in group chats. You could poll for opinions and ask quick questions using Reactions as the response. For each message, you can view a break-down of who used each Reaction, letting you determine the group's view on what you said. Reactions will also show up in notifications for a heads-up view of what people are thinking.
Reactions will make it quicker to send a short response to a message, acknowledging its receipt or promptly replying to a question. They could also cut down the length of many Messenger chats. Since they aren't placed directly into the feed, they'll reduce clutter and emphasise the important messages over less meaningful replies.
Mentions
Facebook also unveiled another Messenger feature today. Mentions is derived from email clients and enterprise messaging suites, as well as the comments threads on social media. You can now mention someone in a Messenger group chat by typing the "@" symbol and then selecting their name.
Facebook Messenger
Facebook Messenger
Facebook
The group members will see the person's name accented in blue text, making it obvious there's something important to see. The mentioned person will receive a notification that links them straight to the message, letting them immediately check if they need to take action without scrolling through a long conversation.
More Messaging
Facebook Messenger
Facebook Messenger
Facebook
The new features will help to cement Messenger's global popularity. Now boasting well over one billion users, the app is one of the biggest in the world and is still attracting new users. Facebook is regularly adding new capabilities, building an entire ecosystem around Messenger to keep users engaged with the app. Reactions and Mentions seem to reach right to the centre of this aim.
Facebook Messenger Reactions and Mentions are available from today and will have reached all users within the next few weeks. Facebook will also be launching the features in Workplace, its business-focused communications platform for enterprise collaboration.