TikTok adds downvote button for comments
TikTok is rolling out an upvote button, allowing users to flag irrelevant or inappropriate comments.
The launch of negative comments follows a test that TikTok ran throughout the summer.
TikTok announced in April that it was exploring ways to proactively remove abusive and hateful content or behavior that violates its community guidelines.
One of the features born out of this testing period is the downvote button, which gives the TikTok community a way to moderate.
Rolling out globally, the downvote button appears below comments next to the like button. It looks like a thumbs down icon, as shown in the example below.
An upvote button looks self-explanatory, but its implementation by TikTok doesn’t work as you might expect.
TikTok confirms that the total number of likes is not made public, which is why you don’t see a number next to the icon.
From the sounds, only the TikTok moderation team will know how many downvotes a comment receives.
Also, the downvote button has no impact on the number of likes for a comment. It’s more of a way to send feedback to TikTok moderators.
On a site like Reddit, when you downvote a post or comment, it removes an upvote. This gives users more control over which comments appear first, as Reddit ranks comments in order of the most upvotes.
This is not how TikTok’s downvote button works.
In an announcement, TikTok explains what it aims to accomplish with its downvote button:
“We created it as a new way to hear feedback directly from our community. It allows us to better identify irrelevant or inappropriate feedback, which helps us foster a feedback section for genuine and genuine interactions.
Our main priority with this feature is to create a better experience for our community. With that in mind, the total number of dislikes for a comment won’t be displayed, and people can resume their comments by tapping again whenever they want.
In practice, the downvote button can have a similar effect to Reddit’s, depending on how long it takes TikTok to act on a flagged comment.
The TikTok implementation has the potential for more diplomatic resolutions, given that the moderation team has the final say.
I mean, downvoting a top comment is unlikely to be removed unless it’s abusive or violates TikTok’s community guidelines.
Downvoting a comment because you disagree with what is being said or don’t like the person who posted it will not impact visibility in the same way it does on Reddit .
Will all of this create a meaningful change in the discourse in the TikTok comments section? Only time will tell.
Source: @TikTokComms on Twitter
Featured image: Screenshot from Twitter.com/TikTokComms, September 2022.