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Facebook Shuts Down Its Email Service Since No One Used It

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg at the 2010 event announcing Facebook's new email messaging system. This week, the company shuttered the service.
Justin Sullivan
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Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg at the 2010 event announcing Facebook's new email messaging system. This week, the company shuttered the service.

Facebook's foray into email ended Monday, when the social media giant quietly retired the email service that many users didn't even know existed. Users received a notice saying the @facebook.com email addresses they deployed are going away.

"We're making this change because most people haven't been using their Facebook email addresses, and we wanted to make it easier to view all your emails in one place," the message read.

The company had touted the service as a "Gmail killer" before its launch in 2010. Facebook Messages was first conceived as a tool to subsume email, text messages and chat on Facebook. As Re/Code describes it, "All of those communications would be threaded into one single communication strand, dubbed Facebook Messenger."

In an effort to win wider adoption for the service last year, Facebook created a controversy when it changed all the default personal email addresses on Facebook user profiles to Facebook.com email addresses.

Having admitted defeat, Facebook will be redirecting any user email sent to @facebook.com addresses to the primary email addresses associated with their accounts.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Elise Hu is a host-at-large based at NPR West in Culver City, Calif. Previously, she explored the future with her video series, Future You with Elise Hu, and served as the founding bureau chief and International Correspondent for NPR's Seoul office. She was based in Seoul for nearly four years, responsible for the network's coverage of both Koreas and Japan, and filed from a dozen countries across Asia.