Facebook will soon launch one of its most requested features – a dislike button, which the social network had previously ruled out adding.
Mark Zuckerberg announced yesterday that the firm has changed its mind and is already working on it.
“I think people have asked about the dislike button for many years. Today is a special day because today is the day I can say we’re working on it and shipping it,” Zuckerberg is quoted by Daily Mail as saying during a Q&A session at the firms Sunnyvale headquarters.
He admitted the firm had held back on launching the button amid fears it would become similar to Reddit, where users can upvote and downvote posts.
“That isn’t what we’re here to build in the world,” Zuckerberg noted, adding “We don’t want to turn Facebook into a forum where people are voting up or down on people’s posts.”
He was however pessimistic about some one sharing some moment that was important to them in their lives and someone downvotes it.
“What they really want is the ability to express empathy. Not every moment is a good moment.”
He explained that if one shares something that is sad like a refugee crisis that touches one or one’s family member passes away, that is where the “dislike” feature comes in.
However, the firm did not say when the feature will be available.
Mark Zuckerberg has previously admitted the site is working on a dislike button – but at the time said it was unlikely to be called dislike.
Speaking at the firm’s offices in California, Zuckerberg said: “We need to figure out the right way to do it so [the button] ends up being a force for good, not a force for bad.”
He continued that people could use a button designed to express negative sentiment in the ‘wrong way’, that could be deemed cruel or mean.
In the meantime, people can send a Dislike sticker in Facebook Messenger posts.
It is available as part of the Likes sticker package, which also includes a heart, a peace sign, a protest fist, a hand holding a bunch of flowers and a glass of Champagne, among others.
According to recent research, the most annoying Facebook posts that would warrant the use of a dislike button are those that brag about dieting and exercising.