What Does SMS Mean on Facebook?

by Kammy Pow

News, especially in the age of social media, changes rapidly. One of the primary ways to stay connected with the news is through mobile communications, and in particular, SMS. SMS, or short message services, is the official name for text messaging, and Facebook has adopted SMS to allow users to receive and respond to notifications they receive through status updates, comments, private messages or changes with a profile in real-time. To use SMS, you must activate the feature in your account settings and define which notifications or alerts you would like to receive.

Activating SMS Notifications

The first step toward activating SMS updates in Facebook involves linking your profile with a mobile line. Log in to your Facebook profile on a computer and select "Account Settings" from the configuration menu. Choose "Mobile" and select "Add a Phone." Complete the information request and text "F" to "32665" (Facebook). A confirmation code should arrive in your SMS Inbox after a couple of minutes. Enter this code in the activation code dialog box. You are now ready to receive and respond to SMS alerts.

Configuring Your Notifications

You can set up the types of alerts to receive, the frequency and number of alerts you wish to receive, and from whom you will receive text notifications. You can do this under the Mobile Settings section of your Facebook account. You can also select which profile actions to receive in the Notifications Settings page. Click "Edit" and select the event types. Click "Save Changes" after you make your edits.

Stopping SMS Notifications

If at any time you wish to turn off SMS alerts for your Facebook account, you can reply with "STOP" to 32665 or you can return to "Mobile" in your Facebook Account Settings section and switch text notifications to "Off." Reply to the text message with "Unsubscribe" to unsubscribe from any friends' alerts.

Messaging Rates

While Facebook does not charge you for this service, standard text messaging rates still apply from your mobile carrier. Unless you limit your text messaging contact list, you could incur messaging charges from third-party vendors that are linked to your profile and who decide to contact you via SMS for marketing purposes.

About the Author

Kammy Pow studied biological sciences at the University of California Irvine. She spent 13 years as a programmer for the financial, medical research, and healthcare sectors. She has been freelancing since 2005 and currently writes health-care related material and pens the occasional review for Southern California altweeklies.

Photo Credits

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