Twitter started testing a downvote feature and new reactions back in March last year. The social media giant started testing it more broadly and publicly back in November, and it appears that it is now finally rolling out globally to all users. While the downvote feature is still under the experiment, Twitter is now gathering more information from all of its users.
Twitter announced that it will globally roll out the new downvote feature, which will work as you would expect. Downvoting, or disliking a tweet will allow Twitter to tune its algorithm better, and the social media said that “This experiment also revealed that downvoting is the most frequently used way for people to flag content they don’t want to see.” The reasoning for adding downvotes to the platform is that it “improves the quality of conversations on Twitter,” suggesting that it could one day be a fully-fledged feature, built-in to the platform.
The feature is now rolling out to all users on both iOS and Android. Unfortunately, the downvote count won’t be visible to any users, not even the tweet’s author, and only Twitter will know the exact count of downvotes on individual tweets.
Downvotes are a great way to express an opinion and provide feedback on digital media, but it can also result in problems. YouTube removed the dislike counter after it found that it was used to harass and bully content creators; however, that raises even more questions on how people can then find more relevant and genuinely useful media on the platform. There are a lot of ways companies can mitigate harassment and bullying, but Google didn’t wish to explore more options. On the other hand, Facebook added reactions a few years ago and didn’t report many findings on how emojis help people react to published posts.