Facebook Announced Test of Downvote Button for Flagging Comments


To encourage the users for more meaningful interaction with others, Facebook has come up with a test for downvote button that will hide inappropriate comments on limited public page comments. But whether this process is effective enough to stop the problematic comments is still something to be sure about as the process of censorship and role of news editor will be redefined due to the additional responsibilities introduced by Facebook. Basically, the fact that pushed Facebook to roll out the downvote button is to empower the users with a signal that can give a hint to Facebook in case the comment is not acceptable as its uncivil, misleading, inappropriate in any manner. Although this is still to be tested, if the dislike button will be appreciated by the users, Facebook is waiting for the feedback to come from the other side. This test will be conducted for the public post pages and users based in the U.S. for now.

The new downvote button is designed to hide the comment as so as the button is tapped once, along with that users get additional reporting options such as ‘Offensive’, ‘misleading’ and ‘Off topic’. According to the category a comment is listed in, Facebook can get to know about what all comments need to be monitored and take action against if found extremely derogatory. Facebook has to judge a comment through various filters, it can objectionable due to its ‘fake news’ source or just irrelevancy.

As per Facebook, this test is short-term and not be affecting the rank of a comment, page or post, rather this would only be a temporary phase where feedback will be collected and the results won’t be visible to the public. Currently, the test is being conducted for 5% of Android users based in the U.S. with English language only. Please note that the downvote button will not be visible on posts by public figures, groups or other users, but on public page posts. And the feature or test doesn’t seem to be expanded by Facebook.

Facebook officials have stated that they have been getting many requests to add downvote button sine 2015. But Facebook was apprehensive about the result, they didn’t want Facebook to be listed among the forums where people purposely upvote or downvote a particular post. The purpose of a downvote on Facebook is very much different and are added just to shortlist the inappropriate comments and nothing else. Therefore, after getting such requests from users, Facebook came up with different reactions to posts like love, wow, haha, angry and sad emoji. Also, Facebook has added reactions for messenger such as thumbs-up or thumbs-down, so that the user can express their agreement or disagreement.

Initially, Downvote was introduced by Reddit for crowd-sourced-comment ranking. Facebook is seeing this feature as an interaction generator tool. Presently, Facebook ranks comments based on the likes and replies a comment gets, and with the addition of downvote button the objectionable comments will get noticed, and responsibilities of censorship will increase.

Mini Jain

Content Writer at SocioBlend
Mini Jain is an experienced Content Writer who writes mainly on Social Media Marketing tools, strategies and techniques. Working as Freelance content writer for Socioblend.com since 2014.