I don't know whether this is a good or bad thing.
Last October, among a range of updates to Facebook Groups unveiled at its annual Groups Summit, Facebook also announced a new feature called 'Related Discussions', which would prompt users to discover further conversations around a shared post by highlighting public groups in which that same post had been shared.
As you can see here, on posts that have been re-shared in groups, which have also appeared in your News Feed, a new purple and blue conversations icon is shown, which, when tapped, highlights other places where that same link has been posted.
At the time, Facebook explained that the prompt would enable you to "see what other groups" were saying about the same content, but now, Facebook has expanded the option, so that more users are seeing the prompt, and more discussions are highlighted in the related discussion listings.
As you may have noticed in your News Feed, both in the mobile app and on desktop, the related prompt now shows up as an animated icon to grab your attention. When tapped/clicked it takes you to a listing of related groups where the same post has been shared, so you can see how other people are discussing the topic.
But you can also now see even more discussion around the same. Tap on the '1.2K More Shares' prompt at the bottom of the second window, and you're taken to a listing of both groups and individual Facebook users who've publicly shared that same post.
That could provide more context as to how people feel about a specific topic, while also prompting more discussion. But it could also act as a lightning rod for division, with people's public posts on each subject now open to even more users for retorts, criticism, arguments, etc.
Imagine, for example, that this was a post about, say, climate change. Now, when you see this post shared in your feed, you can tap through and see every other person who's shared the same, and what they've said about it. That could enable people to start arguments with strangers about their views, in a misguided attempt to 'educate'' them on the facts.
In this respect, it seems like a risky expansion of the option - but then again, it will likely get more people talking.
That could be a good thing?
The pessimistic view is that this is what Facebook wants - by highlighting more discussions related to topics that you're likely interested in, it'll spark more engagement among users, which, even if it also leads to a rise in disagreement, will boost overall engagement numbers.
Facebook has repeatedly noted that this is not its aim, that people won't keep coming back to Facebook if they have too many negative experiences in the app like this, so it's not actually in Facebook's interests to promote divisive, argumentative content for the sake of its own engagement stats.
But it does seem like this expansion will lead to exactly that.
As noted, the feature has been available for some time, but it's now being expanded, so you might notice the animated discussion icon as you scroll through your feed.
Tap through on it at your own risk.