So, because variety is the spice of life, Facebook has decided to add a new reaction emoji for these strange and confusing times – it’s a ‘care’ emoji.
It’s actually the first time that a new reaction has been added since the ‘like’ button was expanded to include several more emotional responses back in 2015.
This means that people can – in theory – virtually show some form of empathy with a post, even if we’re far away from our friends, relatives, and loved ones at the minute.
It will take the form of an emoji face hugging a heart, and a pulsing heart. The first one is for the actual Facebook app, and the latter is specific to the Messenger app.
Well, if you can’t hug people right now – and at the moment you definitely shouldn’t – then it’s got to be almost the next best thing, perhaps?
You’ll start to see the emoji appearing on Facebook’s main app next week, and you can hopefully see the Messenger app version as early as today.
If you’re desperate to see it in action, then all you have to do is go to an existing reaction and try to change it – you should see it there, or you can try to make a new reaction to a post, preferably one that you wish to express a bit of care towards, and it’ll appear.
To change it back – perhaps you’ve decided you don’t care after all? – then you just do that the same way that you would for everything else.
A spokesperson for Facebook remarked: “We hope these reactions give people additional ways to show their support during the #COVID19 crisis,
“We know this is an uncertain time, and we wanted people to be able to show their support in ways that let their friends and family know they are thinking of them.”
In slightly more important news, Facebook has also been working pretty hard to respond to the coronavirus pandemic in ways that aren’t emotional reaction based.
Whilst the crisis is ongoing, the social media giant has been working to weed out misinformation, as well as providing grants to media organisations working to accurately report the news, as well as small businesses, and supporting public health initiatives to disseminate important messages.
That’s worthy of a ‘care’ react, if nothing else.