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Facebook (FB) Adds 6 New Emoji Reactions to Like Button

Facebook, Inc.FB will be adding "Reactions," which is a set of six emojis to its iconic "like button." The new features will be first tested in Ireland and Spain.

"Reactions" has 6 well known emojis to express love, laughter, happiness, surprise, sadness and anger.

Per Facebook product manager Chris Tosswill, "Today we are beginning to test Reactions -- an extension of the Like button that gives people more ways to share their reaction to a post in a quick and easy way." However, there is no word on when the rest of the world will get to use "Reactions."

Facebook users for years have been asking for a "dislike" button to react to posts that are negative or poignant. But Facebook did not yield to their request until recently. In September, at a Q&A conference at Facebook headquarters, CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that the company was working on developing an alternative to the "like'' button.

As per Zuckerberg, the social network refrained from building such an option in a bid to avoid making something similar to Reddits' upvoting and downvoting style system. Upvoting garners sizeable attention whereas downvoting usually pushes the news out of favor.

However, Facebook realized that users wanted something else to express their feelings besides the "like" button. In Zuckerberg's words, "What they really want is the ability to express empathy. Not every moment is a good moment." Though Reactions is not exactly an answer to the demand for a "dislike" button but it definitely expands the range of emotional response on the site.

Zuckerberg himself posted a video yesterday on how Reactions works. It has already received 7 million views. As far as testing of the beta version is concerned, Facebook's Adam Mosseri opined that Spain and Ireland are apt choices as these provide somewhat of a "contained environment" as users here are mostly natives with limited international connections.

Facebook is looking for some good business opportunities through the feature. Tosswill stated that "We see this as an opportunity for businesses and publishers to better understand how people are responding to their content on Facebook. During this test, Page owners will be able to see Reactions to all of their posts on Page insights."

By getting more data on how people react to advertisements, Facebook is looking to improve its marketing capacities and thus bring in more ad dollars and boost its revenues. Advertising remains a major source of revenue for the social media giant.

However, Facebook is treading cautiously as it does not want its site to become a place for trolls and bullies as emojis like anger can be misused.

At present, Facebook carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Better-ranked stocks include Alphabet Inc. GOOGL MeetMe, Inc. MEET and Pandora Media, Inc. P . All are Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stocks.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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