Might we finally be getting the long-sought-after "dislike" button on Facebook?
The social-networking giant is working on an overhaul of its News Feed product, where users post status updates, photos, videos, and other items of interest, according to a Wall Street Journal report. Facebook is considering an unfiltered News Feed, which would dramatically increase the amount of content users see on their homepage, people familiar with the situation told the newspaper.
The site is also working on expanding the functionality of its "Like" button to include other hand gestures created by third-party developers, allowing users to share information about products or services with their friends. The move is seen as key to attracting more marketers to the social network.
A Facebook representative told CNET that the company was testing News Feed changes but declined to address changes to the "Like" button.
"We are currently testing a feature within News Feed that gives people the ability to see what their friends are commenting on and 'liking,' as these actions are being taken on Facebook," Facebook said in a statement. "This test includes a small percentage of Facebook users, just a fraction of a percent. In the coming weeks, as we learn more from this test, we'll keep making improvements and may expand it to more people."
Facebook is expected to detail the updates at its F8 conference for developers, although the company hasn't yet announced when that will be, the Journal noted.
Borrowing a feature from social-networking rival FriendFeed, Facebook rolled out its "Like" button in February 2009, allowing users to express their approval for the messages, photos, and other content their friends posted. However, the feature doesn't allow users to quickly voice negative opinions, inspiring at least one developer to create a Firefox extension that adds a dislike button to Facebook posts.