Sympathize Buttons On Facebook

Using a Facebook “Like” has become second nature for people to show appreciation for a cool news story, a friend’s engagement photo or an announcement that a family member will be running next year’s NYC Marathon. However, what do we do when we want to sympathize with a piece of content with something other than a Like?

Well, last week Facebook held another “hackathon” to push employees to come up with the next big idea for the worldwide social platform. One engineer came up with a button that fans could click to relate with particular content that was sad, disappointing, etc. to answer the question above. According to The Huffington Post:

During a Facebook hackathon held “a little while back,” an engineer devised a “sympathize” button that would accompany gloomier status updates, according to Dan Muriello, a different Facebook engineer who described the hackathon experiment at a company event Thursday. If someone selected a negative emotion like “sad” or “depressed” from Facebook’s fixed list of feelings, the “like” button would be relabeled “sympathize.”

Although this button isn’t set to be rolled out just yet, it is great to see a platform like Facebook recognizing that its users are feeling more than a simple Like. In fact, we as humans feel many emotions across a large scale. As we become more and more involved in our lives online, it only makes sense to be able to show those emotions that are otherwise not currently accounted for within social media.

Having said that, sites other than Facebook are attempting to more accurately capture how fans are feeling. For instance, Buzzfeed has seven buttons to click including OMG! Cute, Fail and Win after each article which helps express emotion and filter content.

Buzzfeed Buttons

Overall, we’re excited to see where Facebook will take the next Like button and hope that more social platforms develop ways for fans to further engage with content. For marketers in particular, these new buttons will be critical to further learning about what content pulls on the heart strings to promote engagement — and what doesn’t.

Tell us: Would you use a “sympathize” button on Facebook?

— Samantha


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