Social Media

Facebook Groups Now Have A New Feature To Screen Members

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Facebook Groups More Control

Facebook groups are an important part of your marketing toolbox, but the problem is screening your new members.

There are a lot of fake account holders trying to get into groups to spam the hell out of your group.  This can be a pain to manage.

Previously I had a criteria for new members of the open group I admin:

  1. The new member should belong to no more than 100 groups
  2. They should have joined Facebook before 2016

If you look at the screenshot below you will see that these account look rather suspiciousL

image of group requests on facebook

You can see from the above that the first request is from someone who is a member of 1,055 groups.  Now that should ring alarm bells straight away.  Nobody can possibly contribute in a meaningful way to 1,055 groups.  That's why i recommend only accepting members who belong to less than 100 groups.

The next alarm bell above is that the person joined Facebook only 3 weeks ago.  You might be thinking that this could be genuine, but to me it rings an alarm bell straight away.  If someone has just joined Facebook you don't generally go about joining groups until you get used to the platform itself.

Facebook Groups Now Have a Screening Questionnaire

In an article from Techcrunch:

Facebook says this feature is now rolled out to 100% of group admins globally. A Facebook spokesperson told TechCrunch::

“Screening new membership requests requires time and legwork for admins – particularly for groups built around focused passions or purpose. For these groups, admins typically have specific criteria they require before admitting new members. Establishing these open-ended questions enables them to more quickly review and approve member requests; in turn, people seeking communities of support or shared interest can more quickly connect with others.”

Group Admins can now find the “Ask Pending Members Questions” option in their Group’s settings menu. As a group admin you now have the option to ask up to 3 questions. Only admins and moderators see the answers to the questions. Users who hit “Join” on a Group with a questionnaire will be asked to fill it out immediately, while those invited to join will get a notification linked to the form. Applicants can edit their answers until they’re reviewed.

image of facebook groups admin questionnaire


Back in February, Mark Zuckerberg wrote in his Humanitarian Manifesto  “One of the things that we’ve seen in online communities, but also including offline communities, is that having an engaged and talented leader is one of the key things for making a strong community … but right now our Groups product hasn’t really been built to facilitate the leaders.”

Allowing Group leaders to define these questions and select who to admit based on the answers gives them much more control. It could lead to more productive discussion and less of the kind of disruption and needless posts that can cause members to turn off the notifications for a Group.

What do you think

Let us know what you think of this new feature and if you have found it useful in screening your groups.

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About the author

Steven Aitchison

Steven Aitchison is the author of The Belief Principle and an online trainer teaching personal development and online business.  He is also the creator of this blog which has been running since August 2006.