Next to the famous Like button, Facebook is going to test out an Empathy button, which allows contacts on the social network to express empathy. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has not yet stated what the “I feel for you” button be called, or when it will exactly be released. All we know right now is that Facebook is working on the new button, testing it out in a closed environment, and will release it, if people are positive about it.
In a Q&A session, Mark Zuckerberg states that building the new button into Facebook is surprisingly complicated, especially for such a simple concept. The new button should allow users to quickly express their sympathy, on posts where it feels uncomfortable to click on the Like button. Mark Zuckerberg gives the refugee crisis and the death of a neighbor as an example where it could feel uncomfortable to click on the Like button.
In the past couple of years, Facebook had already stated that they were considering to implement a new button, but the idea of a new button is a lot more advanced at this moment. According to Mark Zuckerberg, the new button is already well into development and is almost ready to be tested in the foreseeable future.
Mark Zuckerberg also states that it is, in any case, not a Dislike button, because that would make Facebook a forum with up and down votes. If the empathy button gets rolled out worldwide, it would be the first time in the history of Facebook that there is a new button, next to the Like, React and Share buttons.
One of the most common questions during a Facebook Q&A.
During most, if not all of Facebook’s Q&A’s, people tend to ask why Facebook does not have a Dislike button, or any other kind of button other than the Like button. In the most recent Facebook Q&A, a person from Egypt asked Mark Zuckerberg why there are not more button options such as; I am sorry, That is interesting or even a Dislike button.
Mark Zuckerberg answers this question by stating that over the past couple of years, probably hundreds of people have asked him many times why there are no other buttons next to the Like button. He states that the current day is a special day, due to the fact that he is able to say that Facebook is working on a new button, and they are getting it ready to be tested out and shipped all over the world.
Mark Zuckerberg also states that it took a long while for them to get to the point of implementing a new button on Facebook. They did not just want to implement a Dislike button, due to the fact that they do not want to turn Facebook into a forum, where people are voting up or down on peoples’ posts.
That doesn’t seem like the type of community that Facebook wants to create. According to Zuckerberg, you do not want to share important moments in your life, and then have someone Dislike it out of spite. He also states that they have noticed that people are not looking for a way to dislike posts on Facebook. They rather want to be able to express empathy towards their social contacts.