Facebook Groups are about to undergo significant changes, and if you’ve used Discord, the new layout should seem somewhat familiar. Meta is experimenting with a new left-aligned sidebar and channel list for Groups, and the modifications have me feeling very Discord-y. Meta’s purple accent hue usage even looks familiar to Discord.
The redesigned sidebar, which lists your groups with rounded square icons, is central to the changes. As with Discord and Slack, you’ll be able to pin groups so that they appear at the top of the list. Individual groups will have a new menu that appears to be lifted directly from Discord. Channels, Messenger conversations, and events are arranged sequentially in the menu.
Text chats, audio rooms, and feed rooms are all examples of channels in groups. Here users can post and leave comments in a manner like to what you’re used to seeing on your own feed. While audio rooms resemble the audio rooms in Discord, text chat seems like a Messenger thread.
All three of those channels may be seen in this Meta screenshot collection combined. This also includes a hypothetical group dedicated to video games.
The test comes as Meta starts its transition to give Facebook a more TikTok-like experience. It makes it natural that Meta is using the transition as an occasion to reconsider how Facebook Groups operate. As the purpose of that move is to have your feed promote more material from accounts you don’t follow. I believe it may be confusing. But we’ll have to wait and see if the integration of TikTok and Discord into Facebook makes sense in practice.
Meta spokesperson Kate Cichy told The Verge that the changes will be made accessible to the general public in the upcoming months.