Facebook Unveils Alternatives to 'Like' Button

By KYLE FERLITA
On October 14, 2015

Photo courtesy of Facebook

Facebook has decided to launch six different emojis that will go alongside of the like button to better express the user’s feelings toward a post. This new set of emojis includes “Love,” “Haha,” “Yay,” “Wow,” “Sad” and “Angry.” Rumors had swirled that Facebook would be introducing a long awaited “dislike” button, but due to controversy that it would breed a culture of cyberbullying and pessimism, the social media giant went in a different direction.

Facebook’s latest update reached Ireland and Spain on Oct. 8, according to The Independent. The update is expected to reach all users within the coming months.

“It’s not a dislike button,” Facebook’s Chief Product Officer Chris Cox wrote. “Though we hope it addresses the spirit of this request more broadly.” Cox also mentions how the social media site did not want to add negativity into the generally happy community they have created. 

These emojis allow Facebook users to empathize with posts and photos on the site in a variety of new and different ways. According to other members of Facebook’s product development team, a dislike button was just a step too far. Bloomberg reported that the dislike button would “inject negativity into a social network fueled by baby photos and Corgis waddling at the beach.” This leads one to ask, “What’s more effective, to have only a handful of likes, or several thousand dislikes?”

Adam Mosseri, head of Facebook’s news team, was quoted saying that the dislike button “wouldn’t be in the spirit of the product they are trying to build.” The minds behind Facebook unveiled the six new possible choices with which people could more accurately portray their feelings as opposed to the only previous option, a “like”.  While many users were expecting a larger overhaul of Facebook options, people will have to settle for the introduction of these emojis.

“This update sounds like they’re playing it safe,” student Alexander Martinez said. “Youtube and Reddit have both had the ability to dislike a post since the beginning.”

Facebook’s introduction of options that have been present on other sites for years makes the website seem like they are playing catch up. Other updates and initiatives are likely to arrive in the coming months as Facebook works to improve its already popular brand. 

kferlita@ramapo.edu

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