Facebook to Add ‘Hug’ Reaction Button to Help Users Show Empathy
In a world where facemasks must be worn and social distancing must be practiced, people are craving human touch, craving hugs.
While not exactly the same as an actual person to person hug, Facebook is hoping that their new reaction button will help users be better able to show support and empathy with their friends.
Facebook users have a variety of reaction buttons from which they can select to express themselves on a person's post. The reaction buttons include a "like," a "heart," a "laughing" face, a "wow" face, a "sad" face, and an "angry" face. Starting sometime this week, users will also see a new reaction, a "care" button. The new reaction will show a yellow emoji face, hugging a red heart.
The new Facebook reaction button is expected to start rolling out to users the week of April 20. Fidji Simo, head of Facebook App, explained to The National,
"As we've spoken with people about the kinds of emotions they want to convey in relation to posts they see in their NewsFeed, 'Hug' is one of the most frequently suggested ideas — indicating that there may be a strong need for people to express sympathy or emotional support that might be a little different from our existing 'Like' or 'Love' reactions."
"We actually think that a lot of the value of reactions is that they express universal feelings that unite us all. In designing this particular reaction we were particularly inspired by the outpouring of global support that we’ve seen during the crisis and wanted to provide an experience that would help people convey support across borders."