Facebook has begun testing Neighborhoods, a local communities experience within the Facebook app, in Canada and will also roll out the feature to select cities in USA soon, the company announced on Wednesday.
Facebook Neighborhoods — looks like their take on Google’s Local Guides — aims to connect people with their neighbours, help them participate in the local community and make it easier to discover local places and events.
Anyone who is 18 or older will be able to participate in the new Facebook app section. People will have a separate Neighbourhood profile, which will be different from their main Facebook profile. They’ll be able to join their own and nearby neighbourhoods to see neighbours and posts from them.
Facebook will use the activity and information in Neighborhoods to personalise user experience across their products, including any ads that the users may see.
Any participant can choose to add interests, favourite places and a bio to make their Neighborhood profile more visible in the local community. They can also introduce themselves with a post, participate in discussions in posts from their neighbours and answer questions.
Local Facebook groups will also be available in the Neighborhoods feature. They will help people with similar interests to have discussions and also allow anyone from the neighbourhood to join them unless they’re private.
To keep trolls at bay, Facebook will also allow users to block people or Neighbourhoods from finding them in the directory.
“Today, we’re beginning to test Facebook Neighborhoods, a single destination to build and strengthen local communities on Facebook. Facebook Neighborhoods is a dedicated space within the Facebook app designed to help you connect with your neighbors, participate in your local community and discover new places nearby,” Facebook announced.
On Tuesday, Facebook announced that Workplace had reached 7 million paid users — 40% growth over the past year — and is working on new features.
Earlier this month, Facebook also sent notifications to iOS users on Instagram and Facebook apps to allow tracking to keep the apps free of charge. This came as a response to the recent privacy updates made by Apple in iOS 14, which makes privacy settings more transparent and accessible.
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