Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg at the company’s live-streamed Q&A on Wednesday. (Via Facebook).
Sorry haters: Despite the headlines you may have read, you’re not getting a thumbs-down button on Facebook anytime soon.
On Wednesday, Facebook CEO and boy wonder Mark Zuckerberg held his second-ever video Q&A with the public, which was streamed live on Facebook for the world to see. The town-hall style session, held at the company’s Menlo Park headquarters, hosted active Facebookers from around the country, as well as employees. It opened with a question from a UC Davis law student named Eric: “Judging by the success of the Like button, has there been any conversations about adding a Dislike button?”
“You know, we’re thinking about it, on the Dislike button,” Zuckerberg replied, and the floodgates of the Internet burst open. The BBC wrote a post headlined “Facebook thinking about ‘dislike’ function – Zuckerberg.” Mashable, CNET, and a slew of other publications followed with similar titles. But literally seconds later, Zuckerberg clarified what he meant:
“Some people have asked for a dislike button because they want to be able to say, ‘That thing isn’t good,’ ” he said. “And that’s not something that we think is good for the world. So we’re not going to build that. I don’t think there needs to be a voting mechanism on Facebook about whether posts are good or bad. I don’t think that’s socially very valuable or good for the community to help people share the important moments in their lives.”
Zuckerberg did, however, say that he’s open to (but not really pursuing) a better system for expressing emotion, something many a Facebooker has asked for.
“There are more sentiments that people want to express than just positivity, he said. “So one of the things we’ve had some dialogue about internally and have thought about for quite a while is, what’s the right way for people to quickly be able to express a broader range of emotions? To empathize or to express surprise or laughter or any of these things … I think giving people the power to do that in more ways with more emotions would be powerful. But we need to figure out the right way to do it, so it ends up being a force for good and not a force for bad. We don’t have anything that’s coming soon.”
True, if you’d have clicked one of the posts I mentioned above, you’d have eventually gotten to the part where it explains that its own headline is wrong. But I’m here just to clarify things, in case you’re a noncommital Internet surfer like the rest of the world.
Anyway, TL;DR: The Like button is all you’re getting for now.