Facebook recently began rolling out a downvote button but it was limited to a very limited group of users residing in Australia and New Zealand. The Facebook downvote button is not similar to the dislike button. Facebook trialed the downvote button back in February. It has been reported that the new button has been accepted by the users as being “so far, so good.”
People have told us they would like to see better public discussions on Facebook, and want spaces where people with different opinions can have more constructive dialogue, to that end, we’re running a small test in New Zealand which allows people to upvote or downvote comments on public Page posts. Our hope is that this feature will make it easier for us to create such spaces, by ranking the comments that readers believe deserve to rank highest, rather than the comments that get the strongest emotional reaction. – Facebook spokesperson
Though Facebook officials said that the experiment was taking place only in New Zealand, it was available to many of the users in Australia too. The Facebook downvote button appears only on certain public pages which were created in Australia and it could be accessed only through the mobile app.
This downvote button is similar to Reddit and lets users democratically vote which comments or post they like or find important and related to post and which they do not and as a result, it helps to get the users more precise answers that they were looking for and not unnecessary banters. Adding this similar feature in Facebook is shocking since only friends and family connect through Facebook.
Reddit is primarily about stories or communities. So finding relevant things is important. It is not the case with Facebook. Facebook already has reaction buttons expressing anger or amusement. So the option of the downvote button seems redundant. However, the co-founder of Reddit Alexis Ohanian called it “the sincerest form of flattery.”
Reportedly they are not testing a dislike button. They are just experimenting with new things and asking for feedback.