Facebook is considering alternatives to the 'Like' button: Zuckerberg

Facebook is seriously considering an alternate to the like button which would allows users to explore more emotions on the site, CEO Mark Zuckerberg revealed in his latest Q&A talk with the public.


Facebook is seriously considering an alternate to the like button which would allows users to explore more emotions on the site, CEO Mark Zuckerberg revealed in his latest Q&A talk with the public in the company's headquarters where he answered questions from people around the world. This was the second such event held by Facebook.

One of the questions posed to Zuckerberg was whether Facebook is finally going to include a dislike button? According to the CEO, the company is exploring other array of emotions other than Like and that the 'dislike' button as some people might have envisaged is likely to be very different on Facebook.

Zuckerberg said that the Like button was really valuable to the social network but he added that the company understood that at times people wanted to express more than just positivity or the fact that they liked something.

"A lot of times people share stuff on Facebook that are sad moments in their lives or tough social and cultural things. And often people tell us they often don't feel comfortable pressing 'like' because 'like' isn't the appropriate emotion. When someone lost a loved one or is talking about a very difficult issue. And I think giving people power to that in more ways, with more emotions would be powerful. We need to figure out the right way to do it so that it ends up being a force for good and not a force for bad and demeaning the post that people are putting out there," said Zuckerberg during the talk.

He also added that he doesn't think there needs to be a voting mechanism on Facebook to determine which posts are good or bad (something that would determined if a post had likes and dislikes option) and that such an option would not help build the community. He added that they don't have anything coming soon, but are working on the idea to include more emotions.

Zuckerberg was also asked his views on whether he thought Facebook had become synonymous with wasting time and ruining productivity and whether the company could actually change that. The Facebook CEO obviously declared that he didn't agree with the premise of the question and said that Facebook was the right tool to help people stayed connected with more people than they would have otherwise managed to do.

"I don't think it's a waste of time and I think it's sad that trying to build relationships with people around you is considered a waste of time," said Zuckerberg. Incidentally Facebook has been working on social network that would be exclusively aimed at the work place and could roll out soon.

Zuckerberg also discussed the controversial Facebook study which had looked at emotions of nearly 700,000 users by tinkering with the contents shown on News Feed. Facebook's 'emotions study' had been criticised because users were unaware that certain results were omitted from their News Feeds.

The Facebook CEO said the company took the criticism in the correct way and looked internally and "tightened things up a bit."

"We think that the only we can improve our service is by trying out new things everyday...testing new products everyday...We want to make sure we have a positive impact with our new products," he said. He added that Facebook did the emotions study because a "bunch of press had come up with articles saying that seeing happy posts on Facebook was making people sad, because it made them feel like they were missing out."

"We don't want to make people sad...we figured that we have a responsibility to our a community on this. We should be making sure that when we make changes, they are positive changes. But you know, I think that the way we did it was wrong and we need to make sure that when an engineer on Facebook wants to test this, the right people in the company know about it and can evaluate it, whether it's appropriate," he said.

Check out the full session below:


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