Facebook has announced that it has started to test a new way for users to express themselves beyond the standard “Like” or comment features.
Users will be able to express their feelings using a variety of “Reactions”, emoji characters that they can place on posts.
Offering different emoji will also mean that Facebook will start to tally and show those different responses: so, just as today you see how many people and who Liked a post, now you will see which people loved it, or found it surprising, or sad, and so on.
It’s pretty much the way we have our own reactions on articles but using emojis.
Users have seven Reactions to choose from, including Like, Love, Haha, Yay, Wow, Sad, and Angry, each with their own accompanying emoji character.
The new set of reactions will appear across both mobile and desktop versions of the app and on all posts in the News Feed — be they from friends, Pages/accounts you follow, or advertisers.
“We see this as an opportunity for businesses and publishers to better understand how people are responding to their content on Facebook. During this test, Page owners will be able to see Reactions to all of their posts on Page insights.
Reactions will have the same impact on ad delivery as Likes do. We will spend time learning from this initial test and use that feedback to improve.”
Using them is simple enough. On the desktop website, users hover their mouse cursor over the Like button to be presented with Reactions. On mobile, they will appear when you tap the Like button. It’s not a dislike feature, but it’s a step in the right direction.
Facebook state that the goal of reactions is for users to be able to indicate they wish to see more types of a particlular story type, based on your previous “reactions”:
“Our goal is to show you the stories that matter most to you in News Feed. Initially, just as we do when someone likes a post, if someone uses a Reaction, we will infer they want to see more of that type of post”
Reactions is currently available to users in Ireland and Spain, while Facebook evaluate the feature.
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