Your Facebook is About to Get Emotional

24 February 2016
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Your digital world is about to get a lot more emotional…. if that’s even possible.

After more than a year of testing, Facebook has officially launched Facebook Reactions. In an effort to allow its users more flexibility to express how things on their newsfeed make them feel, the company has expanded its traditional ‘like’ button to a more diverse set of buttons that allow one to express emotions such as love, humor, or anger. In order to add a reaction to a post, simply hold down the like button on your phone or hover the button on your desktop. Sigh.


Photo Credit: Mashable

In a news release issued by the company, they claim to have been conducting focus groups and surveys to determine which emotions or reactions people are likely to use the most. The social network has also conducted content analyses to discover how users are already expressing emotions verbally in order to create the new reaction choices: Like, Love, Haha, Wow, Sad or Angry. In an interview conducted by CNN Money, Facebook product manager, Sammi Krug stated that they have received positive feedback and “the Love reaction has been the most popular.”


Photo Credit: The Guardian

The one reaction missing from this newly released set of emotions, a dislike button. However, don’t expect to see this emotion appear on your Facebook anytime soon. Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, said that by adding a dislike button the social media network would risk allowing users to “vote posts up or down” which isn’t the community they want to create.

In the social media giant’s latest effort to stay fresh and current, this new update marks one of the biggest updates since the company was launched 12 years ago. While this new update is a game changer, we aren’t sure exactly how we feel about it just yet. We’re sure that for the first few weeks these reactions will be insanely popular as people explore the various emotions because it’s new, exciting and different. However, after awhile the Reactions will be forgotten about and not used as frequently.

As a millennial only months away from graduation, I must say that this new feature seems unnecessary. I think the new reaction option will only complicate people’s newsfeed and create more noise on an already busy timeline. Personally, I use Facebook as quick entertainment between meetings, class or waiting in line for food. I don’t see many Facebook users actually taking the time to hover and select their emotion regarding a specific post. It may be my opinion but I think after the initial buzz of this update is over, Reactions are going to become obsolete. I barely remember to like posts as it is now, so I know I’m not going to select a specific reaction. That’s not to say that big announcements, such as the birth of a new baby won’t spark friends and family to Love the post!  

What are your thoughts, do you think Reactions are here to stay or will they fizzle out?

About Amanda Kluttz

Amanda is a senior at the University of North Carolina Wilmington where she is pursuing a BA in Communication Studies and a minor in Psychology. When she’s not killing it as an intern, she can be found running around campus or curled up in bed binge watching Grey’s Anatomy or reading Harry Potter.

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