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How To Use Facebook Chat – 5 Basic Tips For Instant Messaging On Facebook

By Jonas FitzGerald

If you are not very experience with Facebook, then you may have not come across the ‘chat’ function. Read on to find some information about how to get started with Facebook chat, the Facebook instant messaging service.

1. Find online friends

The Facebook Chat service is available to all users of Facebook – it is free and readily available on your account so that you don’t need to install anything to activate it. Simply click on the box at the bottom right of your Facebook page.

Online friends are shown in a list and are indicated with a green circle by their account names. Those with a moon-shaped symbol next to their names have been online recently but inactive for over ten minutes, so they are unlikely to respond if you initiate a chat with them.

2. Get chatting

To get chatting with a friend, simply click on their name. You can then type what you want to say in the box that appears. This message will be sent to them immediately and they will have the opportunity to reply.

3. Adjusting the sound alerts

When your friend replies to you, you may discover that Facebook chat makes a sound whenever they message you – if you don’t want this, you can go to ‘Options’ above your list of online friends and uncheck the box that says ‘play sound for new messages’.

4. Arranging the friend list

You can arrange your friend list so that you can view as many or as few people you like. If you have many online friends, then you can click on ‘show names only in online friends. This will show friends without their profiles so that more fit onto the list without you having to scroll down.

5. Going offline

To go offline, you click on ‘Options’ and then ‘Go Offline’. This will exit you out of Facebook chat so that no one will be able to see that you are logged into Facebook. Of course, you will not be able to see who is online after you have gone offline.

As you can see, instant messaging on Facebook can be a quick and easy way of having an online conversation with friends on Facebook. Facebook ensures that you can customise your chat experience so that it is an enjoyable and useful tool.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
FitzGerald, Jonas "How To Use Facebook Chat – 5 Basic Tips For Instant Messaging On Facebook." How To Use Facebook Chat – 5 Basic Tips For Instant Messaging On Facebook. 7 Aug. 2010. 7 Nov 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
FitzGerald, J (2010, August 7). How To Use Facebook Chat – 5 Basic Tips For Instant Messaging On Facebook. Retrieved November 7, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
FitzGerald, Jonas "How To Use Facebook Chat – 5 Basic Tips For Instant Messaging On Facebook"

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