Travellers wait at Upminister / PA

Prompt seems to be the first time that Facebook has told people what to post about, and is upsetting many on the social network

Facebook is encouraging people to argue about the Tube strike by posting updates.

This morning, mobile users are seeing a prompt at the very top of the screen telling them to “Join the conversation about the tube strike”. It seems to be the first time that such prompts — which appear at the very top of the feed — have been shown to users.

Many have suggested that the feature will just lead to people arguing. One Twitter user accused the site of “stirring discontent among [the] population”.

Facebook normally just asks people “What’s on your mind?”, when encouraging them to post in the status update box at the top of the feed. But the new message appears above that, making it likely the very first thing that people see.

The message only seems to appear on the app, and not on the desktop version of the site, and is presumably limited to those living in the relevant places.

Facebook might want people arguing to increase engagement on the site, ensuring that people use the news feed. But it’s possible to filter out such whinging, using some extensions and tools.