Thursday, September 17, 2015

Taking a Liking to the "Dislike"

            For most, Facebook has been a sanctuary for people to post personal political opinions and memorials for departed loved ones; for many corporations, however, it has become a center of data analysis and a way to help develop an integral relationship with customers. Since the founding of Facebook, users have had limited options on how they can interact with other people’s posts to commenting, sharing or, and arguably the most important to the corporations, liking. The ability to like a post or not may soon be rivaled for a top spot option, however. Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, said in a NY Times article that he is “very close to shipping a test” of a dislike button for posts on Facebook. Since the announcement of this possibility last December in a Q&A, social media has been in a frenzy to see how big of an impact this addition will have. A relatively small option that, in all reality, has the potential to revolutionize how Facebook functions, especially how it is utilized by corporations in terms of marketing and research.  
            Up until now, many companies who wish to use Facebook as a way to connect with potential customers to see real reactions to their business have had to run an algorithm looking for words holding a negative or positive connotation. Although this can produce accurate results, there are many ways in which the data can potentially get skewed or large options can get lost. For an example of a possible problem with the current method, one need not look very far. If people do not comment with their opinions, which more casual Facebook users may not, the corporation has no clue what that person is thinking. I believe, however, by adding the new “dislike” button, corporations can come out from the shadows and openly campaign and test to see how their potential customers react in a more real time situation. Instead of search through long dialogue on the packaging, can easily say, “Are you satisfied with our current packaging standards based on your purchases ‘like’ for yes or ‘dislike’ for no.” Simple, yet effective.
            Although, as Debra Aho Williams, a social media researcher from eMarketer said, “[it’s] difficult to imagine a single button that could convey the complex range of negative emotions someone might want to express in a Facebook post” (Taylor). I still believe this is a major game changer. Corporations can now introduce a new product to their customers and at a click of a button they can vote if they like it or not. Giving this second option can turn a regular Facebook post into a poll, now corporations can find out the percentage of people who like/dislike the new proposal and comments can be used as notes to help explain the data. Not to mention, now even users who are still generally satisfied with the company can ‘dislike’ certain aspects making it easier for the company to improve.
Taylor, Michael. “Mark Zuckerberg Talks About Possible Dislike Button.” YouTube. YouTube, 12 Dec. 2014. Web. 17 Sept. 2015

 Goel, Vindu. "Coming Soon to Facebook: A ‘Dislike’ Button." NY Times [New York, NY] 16 Sept. 2015, NewYork: B1. Web. 16 Sept. 2015. <>.

1 comment:

  1. There are many times on facebook I wish I could dislike something, and I would be a huge supporter of a dislike button, but am interested in how the button will work. The button could have use a feature like that of Yik Yak, which removes a post after 5 dislikes, but this could infringe on a person's freedom of press. Or will the dislike button work like along the lines of hiding a post? Either way there are many roads this button could take, but it could be avoided completely if you just commented why you do not like something for start.


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