The Expectation of New Facebook Button

Jang Ji-won, An Hee-jinl승인2015.12.02l수정2015.12.03 12:12l342호 2면






 There are more and more users of Social Network System (SNS) such as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. These SNS each has distinctive features. People can share information through short text drops on Twitter, and communicate with others with the same interests through the use of hashtags on Instagram. The most prominent feature on Facebook is the ‘Like’ button which tells people you appreciated this content, thereby spreading its influence. Through this button, people can appreciate the same information and post about it publically. However, recently Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook, said he will introduce new button which can express a different feeling, the ‘Dislike’ button.

 When Zuckerberg made ‘Facebook’, he originally made a ‘Like’ button, because he wanted users to communicate friendly emotion with regards to posts and he did not want to turn it into a place for debate. However, many people asked him to make a ‘Dislike’ button, and submitted petition demanding the corporation to adopt the idea.

 Facebook made progress towards changing their system allowing users to select ‘Dislike’ with regards to uncongenial photographs and some posts. Zuckerberg also announced his stance about the introduction of different feelings, as well as the so called ‘Like’ button on Sept. 15. Immediately following his speech many reporters speculated a ‘Dislike’ button was coming soon.

 However, unlike the concerns of people, Facebook has maintained that an emoji ‘Response’ button will be launched in Spain and Iceland on October 8. They said they will decide later whether to expand that launch after doing necessary tests in these two nations.

 The method of reacting on timeline to Facebook posts will increase from only one button to seven buttons in Spain and Iceland during this test. The current Emoji buttons include Like, Love, Haha, Yeah, Wow, Angry and Sad. After this test operation, Facebook will decide if any further action on the matter is required.

▲ Facebook made expression buttons. (Google)

 The Dankook Herald (DKH) interviewed Song Ah-reum (senior, Dept. of Chinese Languages) to know her thoughts about the expression button on Facebook. First, the DKH asked her if she had ever had any issues with the ‘Like’ button. “When I read posts by my friends about their tough times or news about accidents or disappearances, I worried that if I pressed the ‘Like’ button it would send the wrong message. The mood does not match expression ‘Like’,” she said.

 The DKH asked what button she thought was the best to communicate with people in these circumstances on Facebook. “A ‘Sad’ button would be helpful to communicate and empathize with people. In the case of Kakao Story, there are 5
buttons to express several expressions such as like, cool, happy, sad, and cheer up. This function is good to convey my thoughts more correctly. However, many buttons will decrease the merit and feature of Facebook. I would like to see the least number of buttons on the program,” she said. “According to Zuckerberg’s Facebook, he executed a test operation of expressing 7 different emotions. At least, the introduction of one expressing negative button is really needed for all Facebook users to communicate more briskly,” she added.

 The DKH interviewed Prof. Kim Pyeong-ho (School of Communications). First, the DKH asked about his thoughts regarding the singular ‘Like’ button on Facebook. “It is not a clear expression of intention. Some issues and opinions can be different, but in man to man communication, it can produce misunderstandings,” he said.

 “I wondered if the ‘Like’ button is proper to use in all situations on SNS. For example, my friend’s acquaintance passed away and posted about it. In this case it is clear that a ‘Like’ is not appropriate. Some kind of condolences button is needed. SNS contain various stories, and I think accordingly a matching button is needed, too.” he added.

 At last, the DKH asked his thoughts about the possible introduction
of a ‘Dislike’ button and its potential for negative effects. “If users feel hurt by the number of ‘Dislike’ they get, social media can be the basis of a public quarrel. In addition, wounded people will avoid saying their different opinions about certain issues making SNS an unsociable and narrow place,” he worried.

 Zuckerberg didn’t exactly say he would create a ‘Dislike’ button. He knows the ‘Like’ button has its shortcoming as users send him feedback through personal messages, e-mail, or comments. So he understands people desire more feelings buttons. As a result, Facebook launched many studies and researched the possibility of adding new buttons.

 People should keep in mind, if various feeling buttons are formed in SNS, we have to use them carefully. Indiscriminant abuse of it can bring war on SNS. There is a possibility that in the future we will be able to click several expression buttons for a post on Facebook. The added positive emotion button can be a consolation. However, abusing the negative emotion button can cause harm to people, so if we can access more expressions using several buttons, we must make our choice more wisely than before.

Jang Ji-won, An Hee-jin
<저작권자 © The Dankook Herald, 무단 전재 및 재배포 금지>

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