Facebook reactions are now live globally adding more expressions and options for people to enunciate their feelings on posts rather than the sole (insanely famous) “Like” button. Obviously it will complicate our lives in more than one ways especially for people for whom social validation and their perception on the social media realm matter a lot. I am sure in coming days we will hear some funny stories about spouses getting angry because their partner has just “Liked” their picture instead of “Loving” them. The degree of sentiment matters of course.. More than that it has impact on the industry as well…
Those who has been in the technology realm or in the periphery of it must have heard about Big Data and sentiment analysis where “data guys” crunch huge amount of data to show a simplistic graph about whether the opinion about the brand/personality is in the negative, neutral or positive zone. Typically to do that huge amount of work is required - to setup a dictionary, high powered data streaming engine, storing, processing, algorithm etc. etc.( yes think Hadoop, spark etc. etc.). With advent of Facebook Reactions I wonder if it all becomes simple. Once can easily hook onto the graph api of Facebook and see the degree of sentiment using the count of each reaction which can be easily slotted into positive, negative zone and draw analysis out of it. Obviously this takes into assumption that since Facebook has introduced them it’s just a matter of time other social media networks like twitter, Instagram will introduce same or similar system. It would be interesting to see how the analytics industry deal with this change. The kind of algorithms and analysis which will come out on this new data.
Now the brands have to be even more conscious about their reputation. Earlier if somebody disagreed with an advertisement or a post by a brand on Facebook, if somebody did not like it they would simply could not express it and only way to express it was “not like” the post and if you liked it then press like. But now people have new weapons - they can mock you using “Haha”, they can show their anger/frustration/disagreement using “Angry” reaction or they may have a sarcastic reaction using “wow”. Companies and brands have to be even more careful and prepare themselves how they engage with social media especially on Facebook going forward.
I am not sure if Facebook has opened a pandora’s box with reactions but given the prevalence of Facebook in today’s time I am sure that there would be a lot of impact on personal and work lives of people as a result of this new introduction by social media giant. Also, I am sure a lot of things would be written about this new phenomenon as well… Like this article… (Wink wink … damn they didn’t introduce this “reaction”)