How to go offline on Facebook Messenger App

One of the biggest concerns I keep hearing about the new Facebook Messenger App is that of privacy. People don’t want to appear online or “available” at all times. I happen to be one of them.

I resisted the app as long as I could, but when I began receiving messages that I was unable to access without Messenger, I had no choice.

On my phone, Facebook is almost always active, even when I am not – that was a problem. I am also one of those who has limited my “availability” to daytime hours. I like to spend my evening hours in a bit of a shutdown mode – or one that is reserved for FUN social media interactions or reading/learning on topics that are outside of my normal “work” related topics.

If you are anything like me and would like to use the Facebook Messenger App while remaining in “stealth mode” there is a way.

On the image provided below – you will see how to access the app and adjust your settings so that you always appear offline – as far as the app is concerned.

facebook messenger appear offline

Follow these steps:

1. Open your Facebook Messenger App

2. Click on People (item A)

3. Click on Active (item B)

4. Slide your switch to the OFF position (item C)

You will now appear offline on Facebook Messenger – you will still be able to receive your messages and replay whenever you like – you just won’t be readily available for chatting when it’s not so convenient for you.

Update August 26, 2015: This method does work perfectly and is the best way to list yourself as offline so you won’t show online/active in the Facebook chat app, nor will you show online in the FB app.

As long as you do not make a post or comment, people will not know you are on line. However, as soon as you do make a post comment, they will know you are online. There’s no way around that.

The only other option you have, when making a post, is to set the post to be seen by everyone except those you wish to specifically block from seeing the post. That will prevent them from seeing you are online.

I think that’s about as good as Facebook can do it. Investing more time into hiding your online status from certain people outside of the individual post setting/blocking and exclusions is just not possible.

As long as you follow the instructions above, you can read as much as you like and no one will know you are online. When I’m the messenger app, regardless of what your setting are, if you open and read a new messenger message, it will show the date and time the message was read. If you really want to appear offline, don’t open and read those messages.

Let me know if you have any questions or comments. I love digging in and researching this kind of thing.

This post is a cross post, shared with Not Before Coffee

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10 Responses to “How to go offline on Facebook Messenger App”

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  1. Rohan says:

    If messenger is offline, can my status be shown online when I am browsing via the Facebook app on iOS? I would prefer that.

  2. Gayla says:

    No, once you are logged as offline, you will not appear online at all.

  3. Magda says:

    When you go offline, do other people see you as ‘active’? If you’re on the facebook app?

  4. Lita says:

    The problem is even doing so – my case – contacts can still see if you logged in and/how long active it seems :/ see many posting this question. Would really wish didnt who up active now or 1 minute ago even offline :/ not cool

  5. Fi says:

    Hi – I tried this but my friend says I’m still showing as active. Any ideas? F

  6. Karen says:

    Hi there. I have the exact same problem but I have already done what you have instructed. I’m already off line in messenger.
    Yesterday I was offline, had logged out of facebook. Closed all apps running in background (I mainly use my iPhone) & did not touch my phone from. 11am till 10.30 pm when I found a barrage of abusive messages from my sister telling me I was ignoring her as her messenger had said I was active & online 3 times. I’m dumbfounded as to what to do to
    Stop this happening cause it’s caysing serious conflict in my family ????

  7. Daniel says:

    The problem is that even if you’re office from messenger, and you still scrolling on fb page you will still appear online. So that’s bullshit because is not resolving anything

  8. Nicole says:

    Well i already did that. But i asked my friend if im online he said yes. But i already turned off the online button

  9. Mei says:

    Still a problem. I turned off my fb messenger but others can still chat me knowing dat im online coz it appears online even thou i turned it off.

  10. Click the Save button and you now appear offline on Facebook Chat to the friends in the list.

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