If you’ve noticed a drop in your members count in any of your Facebook Groups, this could be due to the fact that now Facebook “removes” inactive members from your Group. However, these members are not completely removed from the Group, but they are taken off the members list and moved to the “invited” list. Those who are on the invited list, can preview the Group first, then must decide if they want to accept or decline the invitation. They will not be shown as a member, unless they accept the invitation. In order to view who’s a member or invited to your Group, go to Members in your Group, and you’ll be able to view who’s on which list.
Facebook’s reasoning behind this is that Groups are meant for creating a community for those with similar interests. Therefore, they want to ensure those joining a Group are joining it because it is genuinely meaningful to them. That being said, those members who have not participated in the Group at all, meaning they have never interacted with a post or even visited the Group, will be moved to the invited list, unless they accept the invite. The invitation will expire after 28 days if a user does not accept or react to any posts in the Group. If an invited user does interact with posts within the Group, the invitation will extend for an additional 28 days. Admins have the ability to reach out, once, to those invited in an attempt to get them to join the Group.
This action further shows Facebook’s efforts to reduce inauthentic behavior on its platforms, so make sure you are joining communities which are meaningful to you and participate in those Groups! Also, if you’re a Group admin encourage your members to participate in your Group. This will ensure you no one gets removed, as well as help you connect with your communities.
Sources: Palma, Bethania. “Is Facebook Kicking People Out of Groups Who Don’t Participate?” Snopes, 19 January 2019, www.snopes.com/fact-check/facebook-groups-participate/.
“What happens when I’m invited to a Facebook group?” Facebook, 4 February 2021, www.facebook.com/help/