Facebook to Roll-Out Downvote Button, Working on In-App Dating
Facebook has had a less than ideal start to 2018 following the discovery that the social media giant has been significantly mismanaging user data. In an effort to distract from the data debacle, Facebook has started announcing new features, including the long-awaited downvote button, and an in-app dating service to rival Tinder.
According to a report by The Guardian, Facebook is now ready to roll-out the downvote button. This functionality, which has long been included in other platforms like Reddit and Digg, allows users to ‘up’ or ‘down’ vote individual comments. Facebook is currently trialing the new technology on some Australian and New Zealand users.
In the Guardian report, a Facebook spokesperson said the trial was in its early stages and that no decision had been made on expanding it to the global community of 2.2 billion users.
“This feature allows people to push those thoughtful and engaging comments to the top of the discussion thread, and to move down the ones that are simply attacks or filled with profanity. This does not affect your personal News Feed or interactions with friends.”
Building off the downvoting announcement, at the F8 developer conference on Tuesday, CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that the company will soon offer dating features slated to roll out later this year. Zuckerberg, who assured that the dating application is designed with privacy in mind, shared that there are 200 million people who identify as single on Facebook, making the new feature a no-brainer.
This new dating service features are opt-in, and won’t exist in a standalone app, allowing users to selectively share information via a dating home page that features targeted groups and events. Users will not be able to see the dating profiles of their Facebook friends, and the algorithms will only suggest non-friend users who match specific preferences.
While the downvoting functionality is largely a welcomed tool, many see Facebook’s new dating service as yet another method of capturing personal data on its users. Reacting to the announcement, Gizmodo writer, Melanie Ehrenkranz, commented on the ultimatum facing nearly all humans in today’s world:
“The moral of the story may be that forging meaningful relationships outside the confines of Facebook’s data vacuum is becoming increasingly difficult. You might just have to go outside.”