Twitter has been testing its ”downvote” button for months now among a few users that offers you the option to downvote replies to a tweet.
According to the social giant, the downvote feature is being tested and expanded to become accessible to more people globally. The feature was made accessible to some iOS users last year for testing and it is now available to more people.
Just like Reddit and YouTube, Twitter wants its own “dislike” button for replies or comments in response to original tweets. The feature, which was announced in July, started rolling out globally in early February this year.
The reception about the button has been mixed while others see it as a way to curb harassment, trolling and misinformation. Tech analysts see this as a way of Twitter offloading content moderation to its users hence making it easier for people to silence and avoid opinions they don’t like, however, it could end up backfiring if misused.
The platform has explained that the downvote replies feature will help Twitter understand what sort of replies users find relevant in a conversation versus those they consider clutter and spam. Now, downvotes are not visible to the public on Twitter, unlike how things are on Reddit where users can see how many people have liked or disliked a comment.
“We learned a lot about the types of replies you don’t find relevant and we’re expanding this test –– more of you on web and soon iOS and Android will have the option to use reply downvoting. Downvotes aren’t public, but they’ll help inform us of the content people want to see.” — Twitter said in a tweet.
We learned a lot about the types of replies you don’t find relevant and we’re expanding this test –– more of you on web and soon iOS and Android will have the option to use reply downvoting.
— Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) February 3, 2022
Twitter is testing its downvote feature among a few users
“People who have tested downvoting agree it improves the quality of conversations on Twitter. We’re excited to see how others think of it as it becomes available to more of you,” Twitter said.
Your downvotes are also only visible only to you and other users on Twitter will not be able to see what replies/tweets you have downvoted. The social platform also added that the feature is a test for research only and the votes will not change the replies or the order of the replies.
How this feature will be used by users in the future will determine its efficiency in making the social space a safe space though, the likeliness of it being misused is also high. Very soon users will start seeing the option to downvote a reply in a conversation and it’s going to be rolled out to Android and iOS globally, as Twitter mentioned in its post.
Other social platforms like YouTube, for instance, started hiding the number of dislikes on a video to protect content creators from targeted attacks on the site. Meanwhile, Facebook/Meta which had considered adding a ‘Dislike’ button on the platform instead opted for reactions for users to express views with emojis instead.
Author: Allan Bangirana
Allan Bangirana has a taste for all kinds of topics and usually writes about tech, entertainment, sports and community projects that make a difference in society.