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Facebook Unveils New ‘Care’ Reactions to Help Express Responses to COVID-19

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After it was spotted in testing late last month, Facebook has now officially unveiled its new ‘Care’ Reactions for both Facebook and Messenger, which will provide another quick response option for COVID-19 related updates.

Facebook 'Care' Reaction

As you can see here, on Facebook, the ‘Care’ Reaction depicts a smiley face character hugging a heart, and will be the seventh Reaction added to the set.

On Messenger, you’ll now have the option to change the existing ‘Heart’ response to a purple, beating animation of the same.

Facebook 'Care' Reaction on Messenger

Facebook says that the new Reaction will give users another way to express a relevant emotion amid the current crisis, and better connect with other users.

As explained by Facebook’s Fidji Simo:

“This idea of a hug reaction came back consistently as one of the emotions and feelings that were missing from Reactions, so that’s something that was always on our minds. And with the crisis that we’re going through right now, there’s no doubt that people need more compassion, more support.”

Facebook notes that facilitating more ways to empathize and sympathize can help to normalize challenging situations, which is an important part of dealing with the emotions stirred up by COVID-19. That said, Facebook also says that the ‘Care’ Reaction could also stick around after the current crisis, depending on how it’s used. 

“[COVID-19] is going to help us really understand how people are using it, whether they are finding value and whether this reaction is really specific to the moment in time that we are going through or if it’s more evergreen. Based on that, we’ll decide whether we keep it or whether we remove it at the end of this crisis.”

Facebook has experimented with various additional and alternative Reactions over time, though all of those have, indeed, been short-term changes, and in specific regions.

See also  Facebook Considers Tougher Transparency Rules in Response to Tactics Used by Bloomberg Campaign

In the lead up to Mother’s Day in 2016, Facebook added a new ‘Thankful’ Reaction in several markets, represented by a flower emoji.

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Facebook 'Thankful' Reaction

Facebook’s also tried out themed Reactions, like Star Trek and Halloween variants.

Facebook Halloween Reactions

Given this, the new ‘Care’ Reaction is not a major leap, but it’ll be interesting to see if it does, in fact, end up sticking around, and whether people find it useful when engaging with posts.

It could even end up being a distribution consideration – back in 2017, Facebook actually began weighing reactions more heavily than Likes within its algorithm, because according to Facebook:

If people leave a Reaction on a post, it’s an even stronger signal that they’d want to see that type of post than if they left a Like on the post.”

That could, potentially, make the ‘Care’ Reaction an important consideration for, say, nonprofits or cause-based organizations, or even news organizations to some degree, depending on what the data shows.

And maybe, that could make Facebook a less hostile place for comments – maybe, if it’s used enough, and Facebook weighs that specific Reaction more heavily, it could be a way to amplify more positive, empathetic conversations on the platform, as opposed to provoking hate by sharing posts that inspire ‘Angry’ responses.

Or, maybe it’ll just be a short-term thing that provides another option during the COVID19 pandemic. Either way, it’s an interesting addition, and it’ll be worth keeping an eye out for the new Reactions in your Facebook streams. 

Socialmediatoday.com

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Facebook fighting against disinformation: Launch new options

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Meta, the parent company of Facebook, has dismantled new malicious networks that used vaccine debates to harass professionals or sow division in some countries, a sign that disinformation about the pandemic, spread for political ends, is on the wane not.

“They insulted doctors, journalists and elected officials, calling them supporters of the Nazis because they were promoting vaccines against the Covid, ensuring that compulsory vaccination would lead to a dictatorship of health,” explained Mike Dvilyanski, director investigations into emerging threats, at a press conference on Wednesday.

He was referring to a network linked to an anti-vaccination movement called “V_V”, which the Californian group accuses of having carried out a campaign of intimidation and mass harassment in Italy and France, against health figures, media and politics.

The authors of this operation coordinated in particular via the Telegram messaging system, where the volunteers had access to lists of people to target and to “training” to avoid automatic detection by Facebook.

Their tactics included leaving comments under victims’ messages rather than posting content, and using slightly changed spellings like “vaxcinati” instead of “vaccinati”, meaning “people vaccinated” in Italian.

The social media giant said it was difficult to assess the reach and impact of the campaign, which took place across different platforms.

This is a “psychological war” against people in favor of vaccines, according to Graphika, a company specializing in the analysis of social networks, which published Wednesday a report on the movement “V_V”, whose name comes from the Italian verb “vivere” (“to live”).

“We have observed what appears to be a sprawling populist movement that combines existing conspiratorial theories with anti-authoritarian narratives, and a torrent of health disinformation,” experts detail.

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They estimate that “V_V” brings together some 20,000 supporters, some of whom have taken part in acts of vandalism against hospitals and operations to interfere with vaccinations, by making medical appointments without honoring them, for example.

See also  Facebook Considers Tougher Transparency Rules in Response to Tactics Used by Bloomberg Campaign

Change on Facebook

Facebook announces news that will facilitate your sales and purchases on the social network.

Mark Zuckerberg, the boss of Facebook, announced that the parent company would now be called Meta, to better represent all of its activities, from social networks to virtual reality, but the names of the different services will remain unchanged. A month later, Meta is already announcing news for the social network.

The first is the launch of online stores in Facebook groups. A “Shop” tab will appear and will allow members to buy products directly through the group in question.

Other features have been communicated with the aim of facilitating e-commerce within the social network, such as the display of recommendations and a better mention of products or even Live Shopping. At this time, no date has been announced regarding the launch of these new options.

In the light of recent features, the company wants to know the feedback from its users through the survey same like what Tesco doing to get its customers feedback via Tesco Views Survey. However, the company is still about this feedback will announce sooner than later in this regard.

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