In a Q&A session at Facebook's headquarters in Menlo Park, California, Mark Zuckerberg has revealed that the company is actively working on implementing a Dislike button.
This is a total turnaround compared to the company's previous stance on downvoting buttons, to which it actively and fiercely resisted, taking a lot of criticism for doing so.
"I think people have asked about the dislike button for many years. Today is a special day because today is the day I can say we’re working on it and shipping it," Zuckerberg said. "What they really want is the ability to express empathy. Not every moment is a good moment."
Apparently, this recent change of mind came after recent news stories about the Syrian refugee crisis, which offered very few moments to "like."
Zuckerberg's recent turnaround on this topic may have also had something to do with a touching moment from January 2014, when a dad who had recently lost his son publicly implored Mark Zuckerberg and the Facebook team to let him see his son's Look Back video.
It may not had anything to do with the decision to implement the Dislike button itself, but that event showed the Facebook CEO that its users experience sad moments on the site as well, not only like-worthy interactions.
For now, the Dislike button is at a confirmed rumor stage, and there are no other details on it. This means it could also be rebranded as "Downvote," "Thumbs Down," or something similar.
Additionally, the new button may not even be a constant presence on the site, possible scenarios including the possibility for it to be activated only for specific "sad" posts, at the author's request.
The good news is that Facebook's staff has been working on it for some time now, which means it's quite ready to be deployed if Zuckerberg felt comfortable enough to speak about it in public.