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Facebook “Mentions” Feature Shows What Friends Are Talking About

Ever wonder how many of your Facebook friends are currently discussing Justin Bieber’s luscious locks? Well, wonder no more. Facebook is currently testing a feature that will combine updates about similar topics in your News Feed for easy browsing.

The feature was spotted today by Forbes, and confirmed by Facebook (Facebook), who told us: “This feature looks for certain phrases in the text of feed stories and combines them into one story if it finds matches. It’s currently being tested with a very small percentage of people.”

So, basically, if your friends Kimberly and Tiffani both gush about the Biebs on Facebook, a post will appear in your News Feed that tells you that your friends both mentioned the teen star, links to his official Facebook Page and shows your friends’ continued convo below. The feature is very similar to what currently occurs when more than one friend shares the same link.

None of us at Mashable (Mashable) are privy to these features yet, so we’re embedding one of Forbes’s screenshots below, which comes from reporter Oliver Chiang’s sister-in-law’s account:

Chiang also points out that the feature is not limited to what your friends are talking about, but also what Groups and “Liked” Pages (pages) are discussing as well. See below, where an NPR update appears in the mix:

This feature seems to be another effort by the social networking site to combine information and interactions into a more digestible format. Facebook tested a feature that would clean up Birthday Wall postings a few months back, and just recently rolled out Friendship Pages, which cleanly tell the story between two friends. This feature, along with the aforementioned collapsing of shared links, will make it easier to engage with your friends and follow their updates.

Moreover, we imagine that it will draw more attention to official Facebook Pages, which could be a boon to celebrities and businesses, as well as advertisers.

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