How To Appear Offline On Facebook And Messenger

Have you ever wanted to hide your active status on Facebook?

Maybe you want to take some time off from the busy world, or you’re looking for a new job and don’t want your current employer to see that you are online.

Whatever the reason, there is an easy way to appear offline on Facebook without having to unfriend anyone.

This article will guide you through the steps on how to appear offline on Facebook and messenger.

Let’s get started.

How to appear offline on Facebook on PC

In order to appear offline on Facebook, all that you need to do is turn off your active status.

This is how to do so from a PC or desktop device:

  • Open Facebook and log into your account.
  • In the menu on the right, under the “Contacts” section, click the three dots icon.
  • Select “Turn off active status”.
  • Now check the option “Turn off Active Status for all contacts”.
  • Click “OK”.

You can also select the other two options, to either only appear online for certain users that you are fine with seeing that you are online (Turn off active status for all contacts except…) or you can appear offline only for certain users using the 3rd option.

How to appear offline on Facebook

How to appear offline on the Facebook App

If you’re using the Facebook app on your smartphone, turning your active status off is just a matter of 6 steps.

This is how to appear offline on the Facebook app:

  • Open the Facebook app and log into your account.
  • In the top right corner click the Hamburger menu (three stacked lines or dots) to open the menu.
  • Select the gear/settings icon in the top right corner.
  • Scroll down to the “Audience and Visibility” section and select “Active Status”.
  • Next to the field “Show when you’re active” toggle the switch to the off position (it should be gray).
  • From the prompt, select “Turn Off”.

The mobile app doesn’t have the ability to single out individual users, to do so, you will need to use a desktop device or log onto Facebook from a mobile browser and enable the “request desktop site” option.

How to appear offline on Facebook Messenger

If you’re just looking to use the Messenger app, on either a desktop device or the mobile Messenger app, then you can also toggle your Active Status to offline if you so wish.

This is how to appear offline on Facebook Messenger from the desktop app:

  • Open Messenger and log into your account.
  • In the bottom left corner, click on your profile picture.
  • Select “Preferences”.
  • In the menu on the left, select “Active Status”.
  • Where it says “Show Active Status”, toggle the button to the off position (it should be gray).
  • Beneath that, you should then see the message “Active Status: Off”.

If you’re using the messenger app on a mobile device, this is how to turn off your active status:

  • Open the Messenger app and log into your account.
  • In the top left corner, click on your profile picture.
  • Scroll down to the “Profile” section and select “Active Status”.
  • Where it says “Show when you’re active”, toggle the button to the off position (it should be gray).
  • From the prompt, select “Turn Off”.

Alternatively, you can access Messenger directly through the Facebook app, by clicking on the messenger icon in the top right corner. You can then follow the steps above to appear offline.

Can I appear offline on Facebook but still see who is online?

No, once you turn your own active status to offline, you can no longer see who is online.

If you want to see who in your contact list is online, you will need to turn your active status back on, but this will also show that you are online.

You can however then turn your active status back off and friends will no longer be able to see that you’re online or when you were last active.

How can you tell if someone is hiding their active status on Facebook?

There is no simple way of telling if someone is hiding their active status, but with some detective work, it is possible.

The way to tell if someone is hiding their active status is by first looking at their profile in a chat window on Facebook or Messenger, or by opening a conversation window with them.

Next to their name, if it shows a green dot and/or “Active Now” that means the person is currently online. If it shows “Active X h ago” or “Active X min ago”, that means the person was online that many hours or minutes ago.

In both of these cases, the user is NOT hiding their active status and it is set to on.

In the case that they are hiding their active status, you will only see the name of the user… but this is not always the case.

The second thing you need to know is when Facebook stops showing this “last active” message.

There are 3 options:

  1. The person is hiding their active status.
  2. The user has blocked you.
  3. The person has been inactive on Facebook for longer than 24 hours (or an hour if you’re looking on Messenger).

If you can’t see the “last active” message under their name in a conversation window, what you can do is visit their profile and look at their recent activity. If they have been active on Facebook in the last 24 hours, then they have their active status turned off (or for the last hour if you’re only using messenger, rather check on Facebook for a longer time span).

This is where the detective work comes in, because it may be that they haven’t posted anything to their Facebook feed, but perhaps they’ve reacted to a photo, responded to a comment, or been active in a joint group.

Can you hide your active status on Facebook from one person?

Yes, you can hide your active status on Facebook from one person.

Once you set your active status to be hidden from one user, they won’t be able to see when you are active or were last online, but you will not be able to see when they are active or were last active either.

To appear offline to just one person, you need to set this on Facebook from a desktop.

  • Open Facebook and log into your account.
  • In the menu on the right, under the “Contacts” section, click the three dots icon.
  • Select “Turn off active status”.
  • Now check the option “Turn off Active Status for only some contacts…” and then type in the name(s) of the people that you want to hide your status from.
  • Click “OK”.

This will keep your active status hidden when you use Facebook Messenger or the Facebook mobile app as well, you just cannot alter the specific setting in those applications.

P.s. As mentioned above, if you are active on Facebook (replying to comments, posting, etc.), the person you have hidden your active status from may still be able to see that you have been online.

Final thoughts about hiding your active status on Facebook

If you want to appear offline on Facebook, on the Facebook App, or on Messenger, all you have to do is turn off your active status.

Should you wish to only appear offline to certain people, you can do that as well, albeit you can only apply these preferences in the desktop app.

But don’t worry, once it is set it will carry over to the mobile app and also Facebook Messenger.

So, if you’re looking to take a break from Facebook or just don’t want people to see that you’re online, all you have to do is toggle off your active status, and voila – you disappear from everyone’s view.

Just be sure to turn it back on when you’re ready to go back online.

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