Facebook has considered adding a “Sympathize” button for users to express feelings on posts other than those captured by “Like.”
According to The Atlantic, Facebook engineer Dan Muriello recently “said that another engineer for the company had whipped up the button at a previous compassion-themed hackathon.” These “hackathons” serve as regular idea generation sessions for Facebook and may even have been the original source of “Like,” as well as other signature ideas.
What would the “Sympathize” button be used for? Users may not want to click “Like” on an update announcing a friend’s divorce or illness even though they want to acknowledge to their friends that they saw it. According to Huffington Post, the “Sympathize” button would be designed for “gloomier” updates.
Though the social networking site may be reluctant to add too many buttons, a “Sympathize” button may entice readers to interact with more of their friends’ posts. It may also clutter the site or be “too much of a good thing.”