Is it a yay or nay for the Facebook “Dislike” button?

You’re scrolling through your newsfeed when a friend shares some unfortunate news, and naturally you want to express your sympathy. Do you click “Like”? It just doesn’t seem appropriate! So how about “Dislike”? It’s a question Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg has recently been mulling over.

The suggested addition of the “Dislike” button has been an ongoing request by users of the social networking giant, however during a recent Q&A session when asked about its possible implementation, Zuckerberg gave a firm thumbs-down to the idea, branding it toxic for its community of users, with the potential to be used carelessly. Here’s what he had to say:

“Some people have asked for a dislike button before. They want to be able to say that a thing isn’t good and that’s not something that we think is good. … So we’re not going to build that.”

Rather than scrapping the matter entirely, the platform’s CEO is pondering alternative ways users can instantly express a wide range of emotions and sentiment.

“What’s the right way to make it so people can easily express a broader range of emotions, to empathise. Or to express surprise or laughter or any of these things. … There’s something that’s so simple about the like button. … But we need to figure out the right way to do it so it ends up being a force for good.”

From a brand perspective, the launch of a “Dislike” button may prove highly unpopular, making it easier for audiences and trolls to express negative sentiment, which may endanger their brand value. However for companies marketing from the site, it would be powerful tool to understand additional emotions other than what the like button conveys – a means to easily measure online brand sentiment, to help brands understand and better cater for their audiences.

What are your thoughts on the “Dislike” button – yay or nay? Let us know your thoughts @iftweeter, or leave your comments below.

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