The changes to perhaps the website’s most fundamental feature are sure to be a cause for great discussion. Users have long been requesting a way of expressing more varied opinions on posts, since, as Zuckerberg puts it: “When you only have a Like button, if you share a sad piece of content or something that makes you angry, people may not have the tool to react to it.”
The new buttons - five emoji-style faces for “love”, “haha”, “wow”, “sad” and “angry” - have now been rolled out to the site’s 1.5 billion users.
Testing took place in various places including Spain and Ireland, but beta testers rejected a sixth button with a smiling face with rosy cheeks. Called “yay”, the response was apparently more “eh?”. Many users have called for a ‘dislike’ button, but this idea has been rejected - reportedly because it is thought to be too negative.
Mark Middlemas, of online advertising firm RadiumOne, said the move brought Facebook into line with the marketing strategies of the world’s biggest brands.
“Emojis are the world’s fastest-growing digital language, brands including McDonald’s, Ikea and Domino’s are increasingly using them, particularly to target millennials. In the cluttered digital age, and as we become more lazy, they’re a perfect vehicle to share an opinion in one character so users will like them.”
So, do you like the new Facebook emojis, or do they get a sad face from you?