How to Disable Read Receipts in the Facebook Messenger App

Key Takeaways

  • Facebook Messenger allows you to turn off read receipts for all conversations or individual chats
  • Disabling read receipts prevents others from seeing when you’ve read their messages (and vice versa)
  • The process is simple but requires accessing the app’s settings menu on mobile devices

Facebook Messenger’s read receipts feature can be convenient for knowing when your messages have been seen. However, many users prefer to have more privacy and control over this information. Fortunately, Messenger provides options to disable read receipts entirely or for specific conversations.

This comprehensive guide will walk you through the steps to turn off read receipts in the Facebook Messenger app on iOS and Android devices.

Disabling Read Receipts for All Conversations

To disable read receipts globally across all your Messenger conversations, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Facebook Messenger app on your iPhone, iPad, or Android device.
  2. Tap on your profile picture in the top left corner to access the menu.
  3. Scroll down and select Settings > Privacy & Safety.
  4. Under the “What People See” section, tap on Read Receipts.
  5. Toggle off the option to Show Read Receipts.

Once you’ve turned off this setting, your contacts will no longer see the “Seen” indicator when you’ve read their messages in Messenger. Likewise, you won’t be able to see when they’ve read your messages either.

Disabling Read Receipts for Individual Conversations

If you prefer to keep read receipts enabled for most conversations but want to disable them for specific contacts, you can do so by following these steps:

  1. Open the Facebook Messenger app and navigate to the conversation you want to modify.
  2. Tap on the contact’s name or group name at the top of the chat window.
  3. Scroll down to the “Privacy & Support” section and tap on Read Receipts.
  4. Toggle off the option to Show Read Receipts.

Repeat these steps for any other individual conversations where you want to disable read receipts. This approach allows you to maintain read receipt visibility for your preferred contacts while selectively hiding it for others.

Note: When you disable read receipts for a conversation, the other participant(s) will also be unable to see when you’ve read their messages in that chat.

Why Disable Read Receipts?

There are several reasons why someone might want to disable read receipts in Facebook Messenger:

  • Privacy: Some users prefer not to disclose when they’ve read a message, as it can reveal information about their online activity or availability.
  • Avoiding Pressure: Read receipts can sometimes create a sense of urgency or pressure to respond immediately, which some users find stressful or inconvenient.
  • Personal Preference: Simply put, some people just prefer to have more control over the information they share with others.

Regardless of the reason, Facebook Messenger provides the flexibility to manage read receipts according to your preferences.

Additional Messenger Privacy Settings

While you’re adjusting your read receipt settings, it’s worth exploring some of the other privacy and security options available in Facebook Messenger:

  • App Lock: This feature allows you to secure the Messenger app with your device’s biometric authentication (fingerprint or face ID) or a PIN code, preventing unauthorized access.
  • Story Controls: Manage who can see your Messenger Stories and mute stories from specific contacts.
  • Blocked People: View and manage the list of people you’ve blocked on Messenger.
  • Message Delivery Controls: Control who can message you directly, who goes to your “Message Requests” folder, and who can’t message you at all.

By taking advantage of these settings, you can further customize your Messenger experience and maintain the level of privacy and control you desire.


Disabling read receipts in Facebook Messenger is a straightforward process that can enhance your privacy and reduce any pressure or stress associated with the “Seen” indicator. Whether you choose to turn off read receipts globally or for specific conversations, Messenger provides the necessary options to suit your preferences.

Remember, managing your privacy settings is an ongoing process, and it’s always a good idea to periodically review and adjust them as needed. By taking control of your Messenger experience, you can enjoy more seamless and stress-free communication with your contacts.