No thumbs up for Facebook’s new icons

Facebook has announced that it is changing the design of its like and share buttons across its user interface and removing the iconic thumbs up image from its design.
Written by Eileen Brown, Contributor

Facebook is dumping the thumbs up image on its Like button and is rolling out a new icon design.

like and share
Image: Facebook

Facebook’s Like button has been around since 2010 and it is viewed over 22 billion times per day across over 7.5 million websites.

The Like button is the quickest way for people to share content with friends on Facebook. Clicking on the button will 'like' pieces of content on the web and share them on Facebook.

There is an option to display a Share button next to the Like button. The Share button lets people add a personalized message to links before sharing on their timeline, in groups, or to their friends via a Facebook message.

The Share button is a superset in functionality of the send button. It lets people choose whether to send a link as a private message or share the link on the user’s timeline or to groups.

It is about time that Facebook recognised the need for a button redesign.

There are many examples on Facebook where the Like button is just not appropriate. Liking information about disasters such as Sandy and updates after the plane crash at San Francisco airport might not be the right thing to do.

‘Liking’ upsetting news makes many Facebookers uncomfortable. But there is no other option.

Facebook says that its new design for its Like and Share icons will help people “share more great content across the web”.

It has rolled the new design out to a percentage of all websites already and says it could ramp this up to 100 percent within days based on its metrics. 

According to a recent Shareaholic report the Like and Share buttons are important drivers of Facebook referral traffic, which is larger than all other social networks combined.

Website owners will automatically be upgraded to the new design as part of the global roll out. Facebook has said that it is already seeing a “favourable increase in Likes and Shares” with the new icon design.

It has said that it has not deprecated the send button but will encourage people to use the Share button instead.

Will we miss the thumbs up button to validate posts we like in our Facebook feed? A simple UI re-design will totally change what we feel comfortable voting for, liking and sharing.

Facebook’s data store is just about to get a whole lot bigger.

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