People have been screaming for an “anti-like” button on Facebook since the like button came out. There is even a “Dislike” Button page on Facebook, trying to persuade the seemingly uninfluenceable Facebook design team to incorporate a feature that users really want. Well after YEARS of yelling and actually typing “dislike” in people’s comment boxes (because no one can really click “like” when someone is sick or their life has taken a bad turn), the Facebook team has responded.
Of course, in classic Facebook style, they are not really responding to what people asked for. Of course they could not use “dislike”, the same word that the entirety of the Facebook community has been using. They had to come up with their own term, inevitably a little grammatically incorrect: “unlike“.
Dislike v. Unlike
- dislike is what everyone wanted; unlike is what everyone got
- dislike is a way to say you do not like an update or a post; unlike is a way to no longer like a page
- dislike does not require that you ever liked something; unlike requires that you once liked it
- dislike says you don’t like one post from one person; unlike is a complete breakup
- dislike still doesn’t exist; unlike is still hidden and hard to find
Unlike is the new bold statement in your social media activity. Previously, if someone was posting too much in your newsfeed, you could “x” out of the post and choose to hide that post from view. It is the passive-aggressive way of saying you don’t like something but are not ready to commit to deleting your affiliation with that page.
Unliking is a complete breakup. Before, you had to actually go to the page, scroll down to the bottom of the left side menu and click unlike. Now you can just “x” out of a post by that page and chose unlike and Facebook will ask you if you want to remove the post and unlike the page. In relationship terms, previously you had to go to your girlfriend’s house, sit down, look in her eyes and tell her you don’t want to see her anymore. The new feature is the equivalent of breaking it off by changing your relationship status.
So the Facebook team almost answered the dreams and desires of the Facebook community, but in reality it did not. We can now unlike pages more easily, but still we’re ultimately looking for the great “dislike” option.