Symbol for like - why is it a ❤?

(Cameron Martin) #1

Having a heart symbol for ‘like’ seems weird - a heart implies love, which is a lot stronger emotion than simply liking something. Isn’t the thumbs up symbol more recognised for a ‘like’ button (even if it is just because of facebook)?

How do you change the love heart icon when liking a post? 2
Replacing the heart icon with a thumbs-up icon for likes
Change the Like icon
(Jens) #2

I <3
Seriously, I was thinking the same. Hearting is so much more emotional than giving thumbs up. It fits for pinterest. But hitting that specific icon in forums rather means “I agree”, or “thanks”, I’d say.

(Jeff Atwood) #3

You can modify the CSS to change it to whatever symbol in Font Awesome you prefer:

I’m sorry you guys hate love so much. :wink:

(Cameron Martin) #4

I don’t use the software, but I was just thinking about having sensible defaults.

(Sam Saffron) #5

Personally I want more “liking” in the system, I am not against switching the glyph, but you made no suggestions for a replacement with mocks.

(Cameron Martin) #6

How about fa-thumbs-up: Font Awesome Icons?

It’s just when I first saw the heart icon, I thought it meant ‘Add to favourites’, like what starring actually does, and it surprised me that it actually meant ‘like’.

(Kane York) #7

Eh, feels too “facebook” to me.

(Cameron Martin) #8

Isn’t familiarity a good thing when it comes to UX?

(Sam Saffron) #9

It’s not necessarily a bad thing, that said this is very bikesheddy

(Jeff Atwood) #10

You can read this blog entry (or the FAQ here) to learn about the importance of empathy to discussion communities.

Thumbs up would be a terrible way to emphasize the value we place on empathy. A :heart:, on the other hand, is strongly associated with empathy.

Hence the value of having it on every post.


(geen slimme) #11

I’d be more concerned with users confusing it (at least at first) with favouriting/starring, because hearts seem common for that.

As far as an icon to like/agree-with/support-the-poster, the icon will always fail somewhere. See all the criticism Facebook gets: if a friend of yours posts a well-written article exhorting the West to be aware of rape in the Congo, complete with an in-depth story of a particular brutal Congolese rape, you as a reader might want to

  • approve that your friend has posted this to your attention
  • agree with the article’s main point
  • let others know you read it
  • share it even

but you definitely don’t want to Like rape in the Congo, nor love it. As with retweets on twitter, it’s often not clear if you’re saying you agree with the subject, or want the poster to know you just like the fact that they brought it up, or that you think it’s funny, or simply because you want your twitter followers to see it too. It’s lead to people assuming others agree with stuff they actually don’t agree with.

One reason our forums wanted something like a “like” or “thanks” button is because it can cut down on fluffy “thanks” posts while allowing someone to show their appreciation. So it’s useful! But no single icon will please everyone; it can’t.

(probus) #12

My personal opinion is, I like the heart symbol. It makes Discourse a little different from the others, but I can see how it can be confused with starring.

But I agree with @Stomme_poes that the concept of liking is a bit vague and more so, because Discourse happily mixes likes for posts and topics. For eaxmple, in this topic all the hearts given to different posts for or against the heart symbol are add up and shown in the topic list. Now imagine the title read “Symbol for like - change it to thumbs up!”. It is quite confusing to increase the like-count of the topic by liking the post opposing the original post.

(Kris) #13

This is the best criticism of the heart in my opinion; but still isn’t incredibly strong… there is definitely precedence for hearts as a favoriting function out there, but I don’t think it’s universal by any means; and I think the context helps define it here.

Though further exploring the idea… right now discourse has hearts, stars, and a bookmark icon; I think one’s got to go… I don’t think all three concepts are necessary. But then the question of if you see a star next to a heart does it become more obvious that a star is a favorite and a heart is a like? I think it helps a little bit.

I’d be curious to see if people used :thumbsup: more often than :heart:, because it likely feels a little less committal… though part of me says that people should just suck it up and actually commit to a feeling once in a while.

so bikesheddy

(Erlend Sogge Heggen) #14

@awesomerobot bikeshed for sure, but a fun one!

Been pondering this a little bit. For a while I was favoring the more neutral +1, but now I’m not so sure. It’s a little cold.

When someone shares a piece of themselves on this forum or my own, be it in form of code, a helping hand or just a well stated opinion, I oftentimes find myself being impressed with this person, and thankful. There are some genuine feelings involved. So to hell with it, they can all have a little piece…

(Geoff Bowers) #15

“liking” posts and topics is ambiguous by its very nature. Each community will evolve its own “approach” to why things are “+1|Liked|ThumbedUp|Hearted”; promoting content, giving thanks and so on.

I definitely prefer a simple “LIKE” concept to being able to vote up/down. It promotes a more cordial community. Plus the icon is dead easy to change to something that fits the tone of the forum community.

As to the :heart: icon default?

For my money, its the best choice. It’s friendly… and somehow seems “more human” in a digital world.

(Johan Jatko) #16

<3 for likes is also used by Instagram, so its not entirely new.

(Jeff Atwood) #17

Facebook’s “Like” button is much more than a way for us to react to other people. It is a social-coordination mechanism that tells us how we can respond. It gives us feedback on what is OK (and not OK) to post and generally tells us how to behave on Facebook. Adding buttons such as “Dislike” or “Hate” would probably destroy the social network’s positive atmosphere. But I’d favor adding a button for “Love.”

Source: Dan Ariely

(Jason Day) #18

I think I have issue reducing emotion to a single click interaction. Ultimately, it’s still a “throw away” interactive device. I prefer “Recommend” for these types of interactions, because I feel that “like” or “love” should require more investment overall.

(Jeff Atwood) #19

Well, I agree, and I think if you aren’t invested you shouldn’t press the button at all. Hence, having a :heart: button lets people connect with meaningful actions, not just “oh I guess it’s OK to press this noncommittal +1 button all the time.”

(David Barnes) #20

First post here, but I’ve used forums a fair bit, and I prefer the heart.

Clicking the heart says “I relate”, which is different from “I agree” or even “I like”. As @codinghorror says, it’s an expression of empathy.

A real problem on Facebook is knowing how to support somebody who shares sad news or describes a difficult situation. You have no words but you want to show support: a thumbs up feels wrong, a heart feels right.