Moments ago, Facebook implemented the ability to add more emotion to comments on posts. We kind of knew it was coming but a lot of us just didn’t know when. At least the option to react to comments could lead to a few important thoughts regarding the way our social media platforms influence our emotions and the people we “follow.”
It came as a surprise today for most people, when all of a sudden hitting that like button on someone else’s comment popped up with a little blue dialogue box telling people that they can now hover over the like button on comments under a post for more options to “react” to someone else’s comment.
Mixed Reception With New Features
People are reacting to this Facebook event with mixed reception. When Facebook released the ability to show how we feel by responding to main posts with set buttons like an “angry face,” a “heart symbol,” and a few more standard emojis that indicate emotion, people seemed to feel about the same way. It may not seem like that big of a deal but when you think about the fact that many of us rely on social media for communicating with our distant relatives, loved ones, co-workers, clients, and friends even subtle changes to these communication tools make a difference in the way we use them on a daily basis.
Many people rely on Social Media Platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and more to keep up with trends. They are largely used for business and the spread of information these days. They have a huge impact on decision-making abilities whether we would like to admit it or not, so when a major platform makes changes like these it’s actually a pretty big deal.
It’s much bigger than what people would like to admit. Now you can show 50 times the love or disgust and get more involved with friends of friends’ comments on your friends’ posts. This new option adds to the emotions swirling all over your Facebook feed already. Most of what I’ve seen as far as reactions to this new option have been pretty apathetic. People claim not to care, but they want to say something about it to let you know that they know what’s going on.
A Changing Social Environment
That’s not necessarily a bad thing but it does reflect a general attitude that we accept the fact that communication, in general, has become much more impersonal these days as many of us would prefer the protection of a computer screen when getting confrontational. It’s more a matter of accepting the changes technology is bringing to the table and the way it is shaping our social lives. People who you might never have known or heard of are able to get a leg up in several different industries.
Adapting to Changes in Our Social Media Platforms
Success these days is largely based on influence or reach. The sooner entrepreneurial types can begin to accept this, the quicker they will be able to adapt to these changes. There isn’t too much that we can say about a particular event such as this seemingly minor change to Facebook’s interface now, other than we should use this as an opportunity to reflect on the changes that are being made to our social environments.
How Could Adding a “React Button” Lead to Shaping the Influence Others Have Over Our Emotions?
This is not time to be a technophobe. This is, however, a time to begin to develop your own powers of discernment. As pointed out in a previous article about Facebook’s potential influence and control over algorithms that show us what “fake news” is if we don’t develop these skills, we will eventually give up our freedoms to choose what we are exposed to.
This day in age we rely heavily on social media influencers to show us the way. If you’d like to understand more about potential pitfalls of solely relying on “influencers” to lead us into this new technology age you can check out this article on what happened over the weekend with “Fyre Fest.” Let’s just say, this picture of a pile of trash is how most of the articles depicted the festival area that was promised to be filled with luxury villas and festival activities.
It was probably one of the worst PR blunders we’ve seen in a while. Point being, all of this had to start somewhere and we have social media influencers to thank for this particular PR disaster. What do you suppose these “influencers” use to influence people with?
Considering how these small changes to the way our social media platforms function could in fact change the algorithms enough to have an effect on the power “influencers” have on our emotions too. Something as simple as implementing a “react button” on the comments section of Facebook could have more influence than what we think.
What are your thoughts on this? Are you happy, indifferent, or upset about it? Were you surprised to see a change like this from Facebook? What do you think they could have done differently?