Thanks to a helpful suggestion from a source at Facebook, I’ve discovered a wealth of unread private messages that I’ve never seen before on my profile. And yes, as a social media editor, I’m aware that I probably should have known about this obscure messaging section ages ago, but after tweeting out the incident, it appears that many share my embarrassment. It is to those still oblivious to the feature that I reveal the following.

There is apparently an “Other” folder under your Messages section in Facebook. According to my source, this is where Facebook puts “spammy” messages and acts as a sort of junk folder for the private content others might send you through the network. Should you choose to respond to these messages, future conversations initiated by that user will be sent to your default messages folder instead.

If you’re still having trouble finding this section, here’s a screenshot to help you along:

here 520x402 You might have hundreds of unread private messages on Facebook!Bam. You are so welcome. Have fun digging through spam and junk mail to find some hidden gems — a few of my followers on Twitter have uncovered hundreds of unread messages. As for me, I’ve been lucky enough to discover mail from angry girlfriends upset that their boyfriends have been trying to chat me up through Facebook (along with the actual messages from their supposed significant others). Yikes. One big thank you goes to Facebook for filtering that drama out of my digital social life.

While I’d love to blame Facebook for once again dubiously introducing a feature that many of us apparently remain unaware of, I will instead take responsibility for this one. As for readers of The Next Web with previous knowledge of this section, pat yourself on the back — you were one step ahead of me, and this is supposed to be my job. Oops.

Edit: Another source at Facebook updates that messages in your Other folder aren’t necessarily “spam”, but are actually messages sent to mailing lists and broad distribution groups, along with messages from people who aren’t friends or friends of friends. You can check out Facebook’s original post on the topic here.

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