Facebook’s Not-Quite-A-Dislike Button Could Just Be Emoji, Which It Patented

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How do we communicate consolation concisely and unambiguously opposite languages? 😞

Facebook even has a apparent on an Emoji greeting button. See a refurbish below.

The Dislike symbol has been a many requested underline from Facebook’s users for years. Finally, this week CEO Mark Zuckerberg suggested a association is building a proceed for people “to demonstrate that they know and that they describe to you” when we share something sad, such as news of a healthy disaster or a genocide in a family.

Many news outlets misinterpreted this as Facebook building a thumbs-down Dislike button, notwithstanding a fact that Zuck literally pronounced “We didn’t wish to only build a Dislike symbol since we don’t wish to spin Facebook into a forum where people are voting adult or down on people’s posts. That doesn’t seem like a kind of village we wish to create.”

Slack ReactionsSo what will this symbol demeanour like? One choice we primarily put brazen was “Sorry” since it’s comparatively quick, obvious, and translatable. But a some-more we consider about it, Emoji seem like maybe a improved option.

You competence be discerning to contend that Slack already has this feature. In a workplace discuss app, we can “Add A Reaction” and afterwards collect from a outrageous list of customary Emoji or custom-made ones your association has uploaded to respond to a post.

But while Slack’s complement competence work for a some-more high-touch messaging app, it’s really open-ended. If everybody picks a opposite Emoji to conflict with, we get this vast smoke-stack of them. Many Emojis, while funny, aren’t really transparent in their meaning. What does it meant to Pizza something? Or Moonface? Or Penguin?
Screen Shot 2015-09-17 during 3.17.52 PM

That’s because a some-more good indication for how Facebook could proceed a consolation symbol and expressing other non-Like emotions competence be something matching to Path’s reactions.

Path ButtonsIf we wish to respond to a Path post with any Emoji or sticker, we can do so in a comments. But attack a Heart idol (Path’s chronicle of a Like) reveals only 5 options:

  • Heart – Essentially a Like, a uncover of appreciation
  • Smile – Similar to a Like, though some-more about your possess certain greeting than appreciation
  • Winking Smile – A uncover of delight or thankfulness for someone’s humor
  • Surprised – A greeting of startle or disbelief
  • Frown – An countenance of sadness, empathy, or sympathy

With these 5 Emoji, we can demonstrate a vast swath of common emotions. When tapped, these Emoji would smoke-stack adult underneath a post. You competence not get bashfulness, anger, stress, or other some-more niche feelings, though that’s what a comments are for.

Danny Trinh, owner of Free and Path’s engineer during a time who came adult with a suspicion tells me originally, Path deliberate regulating a slider from happy to unhappy to communicate emotions. But it seems that wasn’t discerning or distinct enough.

Then Trinh had a suspicion of hot down reactions to a core emotions. He’d formerly worked during Digg that popularized a upvote and downvote idea. He tells me a association fast butted adult opposite a awkwardness of people upvoting things that were sad, like a celebrity’s death. In Path’s some-more closely personal amicable networking app, he wanted something some-more nuanced. Here’s what he suggested:

Trinh Emoji

Path began to examination with opposite romantic categories. Then Trinh says co-founder and CEO Dave Morin “dug adult some papers that pennyless down a garland of a vital tension categories and we staid on those five”. This authorised for a some-more obvious interface where all a greeting Emoji were immediately recognizable.

I consider a matching complement could work good for Facebook. It’s never been bashful about cribbing designs from other amicable apps, generally Path. Recently, Facebook tested regulating Path-style flyout buttons for posting statuses. Back in 2013, Facebook incited a Send symbol on Messenger into a Thumbs Up if we hadn’t created any text…just like Path’s Check Mark.


Path’s Check Mark (left) seems to have desirous Facebook Messenger (right) display a Like symbol when we haven’t created any text


If Facebook combined a Sad Emoji or a singular operation of Emoji, it could give people a zodiacally distinct proceed to now share emotions over Likes but overly cluttering a interface. In fact, Facebook already offers ways to share Emoji-based “Feeling” standing updates. This would only be fluctuating Emoji pity into a feedback format.

Done right, Emoji feedback could indoctrinate Facebook’s News Feed classification algorithm that something common is critical and showed to some-more people, even if it’s not Likeable.

Update: 9/18

In Fact, Facebook Patented An Emoji Reaction Button

Apparently we was on a right track. The morning after edition this article, The Next Web’s Natt Garun dug adult an aged Facebook apparent filing for an Emoji greeting button. It looks roughly matching to Path’s Emoji Selector that we suggested Facebook competence mime, and was filed dual years after Path debuted a design.


The apparent filing shows a Emoji Selector symbol subsequent to a Like and Comment buttons on Facebook posts. When clicked, it reveals a tiny set selectable Emoji, with 5 in one judgment sketch and 14 in another. Once tapped, a thumbnail of a sender’s face with their selected emoji overlaid appears in a quarrel above a post’s Like count and Comment reel.



While a final pattern could positively be different, it seems Facebook does see consequence in charity a singular preference of emoji reactions, expected including a unhappy face, as an answer to requests for a Dislike button.