Facebook on Wednesday announced a move that has been long in the making: the company is extending the functionality of its ubiquitous Like button with six different reactions that help describe users’ mood and express how something they see in the News Feed makes them feel.
Available to all users globally across all mobile and desktop platforms, the six new reactions—Like, Love, Haha, Wow, Sad or Angry—can be applied by holding down the Like button on mobile or hovering over the Like button on desktop.
Facebook says it’s been testing these reactions in a few markets since last year, and have received positive feedback so far. “We understand that this is a big change, and want to be thoughtful about rolling this out,” said the firm.
“For more than a year we have been conducting global research including focus groups and surveys to determine what types of reactions people would want to use most,” notes Facebook. “We also looked at how people are already commenting on posts and the top stickers and emoticons as signals for the types of reactions people are already using to determine which reactions to offer.”
Starting today, these six reactions are available to all Facebook users around the world. According to Facebook’s Product Manager Sammi Krug, applying a reaction tells the Facebook algorithm that you want to see more of that type of post.
While Facebook will in the beginning treat every reaction as a Like. Over time, as the algorithm learns how the different reactions should be weighted differently, your reactions may affect what you see in the News Feed.
Additionally, Facebook Page owners will be able to see reactions to all of their posts on Page Insights. Facebook has confirmed that reactions will have the same impact on ad delivery as likes.