It’s probably one of Facebook’s most requested features — a “dislike” button that lets users express an emotion other than “like.” News emerged last month that the social network was finally working on something along those lines, though Zuckerberg declined to share exactly what it would look like — but today things get a whole lot clearer.
From tomorrow (October 9, 2015), some Facebook users in Ireland and Spain will start seeing “Reactions,” Facebook’s new emoji-based buttons that let users express a range of emotions in response to their friends’ posts. We predicted something like this would happen.
Above: Facebook Reactions
To add a reaction, you simply press the “Like” button on the mobile app, or hover over the “Like” button on desktop to open the extra reaction buttons.
Above: Facebook Reactions: Sad
This is in line with what Zuckerberg has said all along — a simple “Dislike” buttonis open to abuse and could create a poisonous atmosphere on the social network. The way Facebook is actually rolling this out, users can elect to not only “Like” something, but also “Love” it or show that they found it amusing, sad, amazing, or anger-inducing. There is still some scope for people to misuse these buttons, but this is probably the most effective way of introducing new emotions to the mix.
“People come to Facebook to share all kinds of things — whether that’s updates that are happy, sad, funny or thought-provoking,” a Facebook spokesperson told VentureBeat. “And we’ve heard you’d like more ways to celebrate, commiserate or laugh together. That’s why we are testing Reactions, an extension of the Like button, to give you more ways to share your reaction to a Facebook post in a quick and easy way.”
Facebook has been in need of more sentiment options for a while, and tomorrow it moves one step closer to making that happen. There is no official word yet on when Reactions will be launching more widely, but it’s typical of Facebook to slowly introduce new features such as this and then tweak them based on feedback it receives from a smaller, more localized group.