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Facebook has finally launched its expansion to the Like button but there is no Dislike button, just a broader Reactions in which users can pick one of six responses. After over a year in development, the new expanded feature was rolled out to Facebook users globally on 24 February.
Facebook product manager Sammi Krug said: "We have been testing Reactions in a few markets since last year, and have received positive feedback so far. Today, we're excited to offer it to everyone who uses Facebook around the world. We will continue learning and listening to feedback to make sure we have a set of reactions that will be useful for everyone. We hope you enjoy the new Reactions!"
The social media giant has apparently abridged the expansive range of human emotions to six simplified emotional reactions — love, haha, wow, sad, angry and the iconic and simple like. The expanded features appear in the form of a customised emoji. All the new reactions have a face apart from love, which is instead denoted by a heart.
Reactions is Facebook's compromise on the popular demand for a dislike button. In efforts to limit negativity on its social media platform, the company has foregone implementing a dislike button, instead adding the sad and angry emotional responses to its expansion of emotional responses.
Following extensive testing of the feature for over a year in Spain and Ireland, Facebook said Reactions had proven popular among users, leading to its global launch. The social media giant has been fairly cautious in making any major changes to its namesake website. Facebook chief product officer Chris Cox, who is also the man who spearheaded the Reactions concept, had said while Reactions was still in its developmental stages that there was a very real need to ensure that the feature is "executed really well in order to not detract and clutter up the experience".
Keeping in mind the ease and simplicity of use, Facebook has cleverly designed Reactions to literally be an extension of the Like button. Users only need to gently hover over the Like button for the added emotional reactions to pop up. This is a sensible move, as it prevents cluttering of users' posts with numerous buttons, while simultaneously also discreetly offering them an option apart from the regular Like.
Facebook users on both iOS and Android can now upgrade their apps and enjoy the extended emotion-laden feature. No more forced Like posting on a friend's post about being sacked, you now have Sad and Angry. Also, no more "liking" surprise announcements when you can use Wow and for those overflowing with that tender emotion called love, feel free to fill your posts with hearts.