Tuesday, September 28, 2021

    Twitter Introduces A ‘Dislike’ Button



    As someone who is more than a little bit addicted to Twitter, I no doubt annoy my friends by liking endless daft tweets day in, day out.

    Now a new feature on the social media platform could well mean I end up glued to Twitter forevermore. I’m talking of course about the recent testing of a ‘dislike’ button, which has already left users divided.

    With so much harassment and abuse on social media platforms, some have expressed understandable fears that this function could stir up further negativity, while others quite like the idea of having a new way to have their opinions heard.

    The ‘dislike’ button is apparently being tested as a way of improving online conversations. Although these downvotes won’t be made publicly visible, these will allow Twitter to ‘understand what people think is valuable to the conversation’.

    Yesterday, the official account for Twitter Support account gave further details about the test, explaining that only select users will have the option for ‘upvotes’ and ‘downvotes’, with ‘upvotes being displayed as your traditional ‘likes’.

    The account tweeted:

    Some of you on iOS may see different options to up or down vote on replies. We’re testing this to understand the types of replies you find relevant in a convo, so we can work on ways to show more of them.

    Your downvotes aren’t public, while your upvotes will be shown as likes.

    […] Some key notes about this experiment:

    1. This is just a test for research right now.
    2. This is not a dislike button.
    3. Your downvotes are visible to you only.
    4. Votes won’t change the order of replies.

    In a follow up tweet, Twitter Support explained that ‘this isn’t quite a dislike button’:

    In this research experiment, the thumbs down icon is a down vote that lets us know that you think the reply isn’t relevant to the conversation. We want to better understand the types of replies you do and don’t find relevant in a convo.

    Downvotes or ‘dislike’ buttons aren’t currently being widely used on social media platforms, and this isn’t something we’ve seen tested on comparable social media giants, Instagram and Facebook.

    At the time of writing, only YouTube has a button displaying how many likes and dislikes a video has received, while forums such as Reddit and Quora feature downvotes and upvotes for posts.


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