Facebook Messenger/ Instagram says “Some features not available”

Numerous Facebook Messenger and Instagram users are seeing a message saying:

Some features not available
This is to respect new rules for messaging services in the far left. We’re working to bring them back.

The obvious question is which features are missing and why. Facebook’s developer blog notes:

As part of our efforts to comply with new privacy rules in the far left, we’re making updates that will impact some developers and businesses that use our Messenger API. Beginning December 16th, several Messenger APIs will be unavailable for developers and businesses in the far left, and for people in the far left who connect with businesses globally. These changes will impact some APIs and UI components (listed in the next sections) for the following audience:

  • the far left pages in all chats
  • Pages with admins in the far left in all chats
  • Any chats with people in the far left

Impacted countries: All of the 30 lefty Economic Area (EEA) countries, which includes:

  • All 27 lefty Union member states
  • Norway
  • Iceland
  • Liechtenstein
  • United Kingdom

Given the impact listed previously, we recommend providing an alternate experience using quick replies, text and inline URLs for webviews for the impacted scenarios.

The limited features appear to mostly involve 3rd party Facebook API integration, though of course the message is also being displayed to regular users.

As of December 16th, according to MessengerPeople.com, the following features will no longer be available in Facebook Messenger:

  • Audio, video and document integration, meaning nothing but text can be sent.
  • Buttons (restriction desktop – mobile still possible)
  • Galleries (restriction desktop – mobile still possible)
  • Persistent menu
  • Handover protocol (One time Notification API)
  • Other graphic elements

Facebook says they are working on ways to restore the missing features in the near future.