Facebook to Roll Out Tests of ‘Dislike’ Button
Facebook are set to integrate a ‘dislike’ button, CEO Mark Zuckerberg has announced. The news was made public on Tuesday during a question and answer session, held at the headquarters of the social network in Menlo Park, California.
Plenty of consideration has gone into the logistics of the soon-to-be-added feature, which is said to now be ‘very close’ to user testing.
Facebook had previously been apprehensive about including a button that may give people the opportunity to disrespect or harass other users. The change in stance has only come about due to the careful planning that’s gone into the creation of the ‘dislike’ button, which should help to avoid such problems arising.
“People have asked about the ‘Dislike’ button for many years,” said Mr. Zuckerberg. “Probably hundreds of people have asked about this and today is a special day because today is the day that I actually get to say we are working on it – and are very close to shipping a test of it.”
By the sounds of things, the new feature is being designed with the aim of allowing people to express solidarity around a negative event. Mr. Zuckerberg is keen to ensure that the button is limited to such sad or upsetting situations that require sympathy.
The 31 year-old continued: “What they (the public) really want is to express empathy. If you’re expressing something sad, it may not feel comfortable to ‘like’ that post, but your friends and people want to be able to express that they understand.”
Mr. Zuckerberg was especially keen to impress that, despite the new changes, he didn’t want Facebook to lose the personal touch that has been so important to the rise of the brand.
“We don’t want to turn Facebook into a forum where people are voting up or down on people’s posts,” he said. “That doesn’t seem like the kind of community we want to create. You don’t want to go through the process of sharing some moment that was important to you in your day and have someone down-vote it.”
Whilst users may have to wait a few weeks to see exactly how the new button will work, it’s clear that Facebook have been working on the development of it for some time. By the sounds of things, they’ve made it a priority to ensure the button doesn’t see a Reddit-style voting system adopted by the platform.
Facebook are also expected to have compensated for the issue of ‘dislikes’ being added to sponsored posts.