Youth react to Facebook’s ‘wow’ feature

Yes, we are aware that most young people left Facebook the second their parents “friended” them, but since teens are the indisputable emoji experts, who better to ask about the new set of “Reaction” buttons? So we reached out to middle and high school students in the SRL network to get a reading on Facebook’s expansion of the “like” button to emoji feelings such as love, “haha”, wow, sad and angry.

Here’s what they had to say:

Data collection from Student Reporting Lab of over 100 results responses.


“If someone posts something about their cat dying I don’t ‘like’ it, but I want to acknowledge that I’m sorry for them. So, I think the new emojis are very useful.”
– Nick Hinojosa (Etiwanda High School in Etiwanda, California)


“It will help tell others how you are feeling without talking.”
– Heather Shewman (Desert Pines High School in Las Vegas, Nevada)


“I think they can better explain how someone feels – in that it limits miscommunication. However, I have seen them be used in a much more cuttingly vicious way than just words have managed before.”
– David Venish (Cedar Ridge High School in Round Rock, Texas)


“It could cause cyber-bullying or a lack of self-confidence.”
– Ruth Niles (Wauwatosa West High School in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin)


“I always felt awful clicking ‘like’ if I wanted to show my support for someone’s tragedy like the loss of a loved one. In a school environment, it will help people with general translation of emotions onto the web.”
– Matt Harmon (Royal Oak High School in Royal Oak, Michigan)