Like, Love, Haha: Your guide to Facebook's emoji reactions

This image was removed due to legal reasons.

The long awaited Facebook update is finally here: The 'like' button has now been fractured into six different emoji reactions: Like, Love, Haha, Wow, Sad and Angry. Just hover over the 'Like' button, or hold down on mobile, and you'll be presented with a whole range of reactions.

This image was removed due to legal reasons.

Overwhelmed by the new options? We're here to help:

❤️ Love

It's really tempting to use this for all posts of interest, especially if you are used to 'loving' everything on Instagram. Resist the urge!

If you saw this post in your Tinder feed, would you swipe right? Then use the old LIKE thumbs up. But if it would make you cyber stalk them and hang out at their gym so you could casually bump into them while carrying a copy of their favorite book? LOVE. All I'm saying is, don't rush into anything. Especially if you haven't event bothered to read the article yet.

😆 Haha

This is one of my most used emoji and I'm thrilled to see it added to the roster of commonplace emotional reactions to any given post. After a great amount of research into the 'language of laughter', Facebook opted not to call this the LOL, which has fallen out of favor with everyone who is not a parent trying to look cool. If you are reading this and you are a parent trying to look cool, simply replace your LOLz with the new face of laughter, the Haha. For everyone else this is the appropriate way to react to anything that made you snicker, smirk, or guffaw, since we don't yet have those emoji as options. An Onion headline? HAHA. GIF of a cat dressed in a monkey suit licking a banana? HAHA.

😢 Sad

This is the face that launched a thousand Facebook complaints. Until now we had no way to appropriately react to posts about a loved one's passing, or the news that yet another life had been lost to gun violence. Those posts, which we might feel odd about 'liking', could very easily fall out of sight, lost forever to the Facebook news feed algorithm for lack of likes. The Sad reaction has the potential to change all of that, giving us a new way to respond and 'upvote' news that we don't 'like' but do have feelings about.


Unfortunately, there is no news yet on how the new set of six reactions might change what we see in our feeds, I'm thrilled that the Sad reaction could encourage people to post a wider range of news. Housing market in the Bay Area? SAD. A David Bowie video? SAD.

😯 Wow

The wonder of the internet knows no bounds. I predict Wow being used heavily on vacation photos of pristine beaches, listicles of the world's most amazing undiscovered places, impressive dance routines from reality competitions, and chocolate fountains. I see this mostly as a reaction to visual information, and breaking news. Facebook just released emoji reactions: WOW.


😡 Angry

Just in time for the onslaught of Trump quotes in your Newsfeed, we finally have an appropriate reaction: anger. There is no better emoji to unleash in an election year. I can see this being very useful for political plights of all sorts: An abuse of civil rights? ANGRY. A celebrity defending an alleged rapist? ANGRY.


Angry could also have a lot of crossover with Sad. Were you tearing up over the baby dolphin sacrificed for selfies? Or were you ANGRY? When news elicits more than one emotion, I could see these new Facebook reactions slowing us down a bit. That bring us to the real question here: Will people take the time, even if it's just a second more, to select these additional options? Will this new range of emotion usher in a new age of feel-y news feeds? Only ⏰ will tell.

Cara Rose DeFabio is a pop addicted, emoji fluent, transmedia artist, focusing on live events as an experience designer for Real Future.