Facebook killed their M chat bot a few months back because it was more artificially stupid than artificially intelligent. Unfortunately, it lives on as the equally unintelligent M Suggestions in Facebook Messenger. Here’s how to turn those off.

What is Facebook M?

Facebook M was a virtual assistant chat bot that actually used humans to do most things. Facebook’s plan was to use the humans to train the chat bot, and then phase out how much the humans had to do. This didn’t work.

A lot of noise was made in the press about Facebook M, but it was only ever available to around 2,000 Californians. The human end of things could never really scale to more.

At the start of this year, Facebook pulled the plug on M as an independent chat bot. Instead, it lives on in M Suggestions based off what they learned from working with the chat bot. It doesn’t, however, seem like they’ve learned that much.

M Suggestions pop up based on the context of your conversations. It can do things like:

  • Suggest some appropriate stickers for a reply.
  • Pay or request money.
  • Share your location.
  • Help you make plans.
  • Start a poll so you can get a group of people to decide what to do.
  • Hail an Uber or Lyft.

If these sound like kind of things you can quickly and easily do with, say, an app or by using your words, you’d be right. I’ve found that M Suggestions are at best, irrelevant. At worst, they’re actively in the way, and I often tap them by mistake.

How to Turn Off Facebook M Suggestions

To turn off Facebook M Suggestions, open Facebook Messenger, and then tap your profile icon. On iOS, it’s at the top left of the screen; on Android it’s at the top right.

Scroll down and select the “M Settings” category.

To get rid of M suggestions, just  turn the “Suggestions” toggle off.

And just like that, M will annoy you no more. If it ever does start being actually useful, you can always turn it back on.

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Harry Guinness is a photography expert and writer with nearly a decade of experience. His work has been published in newspapers like The New York Times and on a variety of other websites, from Lifehacker to Popular Science and Medium's OneZero.
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