Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced this week that the company is at long last responding to users’ request for a “dislike” button. Apparently, actually forming words to express empathy or distaste is too difficult, and people are tired of relying on happy or sad face emojis to express their deepest feelings.
“People have asked about the ‘dislike’ button for many years,” Zuckerberg said at Facebook’s headquarters in Menlo Park, California. “Today is the day that I actually get to say we are working on it.” Users who have grown tired of using that weird sad fat cat sticker to express distaste – rejoice.
At a town hall discussion last December, Zuckerberg dismissed the idea of the button, saying, “Some people have asked for a dislike button because they want to be able to say ‘that thing isn’t good,’ and we’re not going to do that,” Zuckerberg said. “I don’t think that’s socially very valuable, or great for the community.”
The problem is, there’s just so much bad shit happening in the world, and not enough totally apathetic ways to show we care. Now, we’ll be able to abandon all useful social discourse and just hit “dislike.” Then we can go back to watching cat videos and playing Candy Crush.
How are you supposed to let your friends know you care that their dog died? You can’t hit “like” on their “Goodbye Fido” post, lest they think you’re a horrible, dog-hating, human. Your hands are literally tied without a dislike button. TIED.
“What they really want is the ability to express empathy. Not every moment is a good moment,” Zuckerberg said, according to Business Insider. How are we supposed to express empathy in the absence of the existence of a dislike button? What could Facebook users possibly do instead? That doesn’t involve actually forming a thoughtful comment, of course. No one wants to be bothered with that.
There will surely be confusion with the use of a dislike button, but a little confusion trumps the need to actually communicate with people, right? Did she dislike that post because my baby is crying, or because she hates my baby? Why did he dislike that post about my wedding day? Seven people dislike my new profile picture? What the hell?
Sacrifices, people. We need to build a thicker “dislike” skin if we want Facebook to do its job appropriately — enable all of us communicate while totally not communicating at all.