Facebook is reported to be testing a new ‘downvote’ feature in the comments section which however does not exactly downvote a comment. That said, it does serve an important purpose, that of informing the company if there is an adverse or abusive comment made.
It is only that the downvote name is a bit confusing and many believed it might have to do with the feature of the same name found on Reddit. As is well known, the downvote button on Reddit pushes a comment down the order and is seen as a rebuke of sorts for not offering the most appropriate of answers.
The same on Facebook will serve to inform the company each time someone has any issues with any comment posted on the site. Pressing the same will present the user with four options seeking further clarification as to why the comment is being reported for. Users can choose between offensive, misleading, off-topic and other while the comment too will become hidden from view.
Facebook meanwhile has clarified the new downvote feature cannot be equated with a dislike button. Rather, it can be seen as a convenient tool that users can use to provide feedback about comments made on public posts on its platform. Facebook also said the new downvote feature is still being tested and the feature has only been provided to a select few users.
No word yet when it might see a larger roll out to all users across the globe. Or if it would continue to be referred as downvote when officially launched, if at all, considering the confusion it has already created.
Interestingly, there has been a persistent demand for a dislike button on Facebook much on the lines of the famous like button it has on offer since inception. So while there is a way users can like a post, there is not much else they can do when they dislike something. The company sometime back had introduced a few other options to further express their reaction to a post. Those ranged from outright hilarious to angry but have all been grouped under like.
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Meanwhile, the new downvote button will help address one of the most pertinent issues with Facebook, that of posting abusive or offensive comments and how it can often take even up to days for the company to act on it. With the new downvote button, users will be better placed to report such comments though let’s just hope the new feature is used wisely enough and not grossly misused.