Facebook’s “Like” button has become an integral part of online life, connecting sites around the web back to the social network, helping people send quick signals to their friends — and filling up Facebook’s databases with valuable information about the activities and preference of its users, whether or not those users happen to be aware of that fact.

But the “Like” button is pretty simplistic. It’s a binary measurement of a multifaceted world. Facebook knows this, and it has been working with third-party services and applications to add new verbs to the mix as part of an expansion of its “Open Graph” initiative.

It started a while back, most noticeably through the integration of apps such as music service Spotify into Facebook — showing Facebook users what their friends are listening to at any given moment, for example. Other examples include the ability for Facebook users to indicate that they’re watching a particular show or cooking a particular dish.

Now, a new wave of Facebook apps is taking it to a whole new level.

Case in point: Wetpaint Entertainment, a television fan site that is integrating with the Facebook Timeline to let people click to say LOVE!, BOO!, TMI, HOT!, OMG, EWW!, LOL!, or MEH, in the same way that they’ve said “Like” in the past. The site, operated by Seattle-based startup Wetpaint, rolled out the new buttons today.

When someone clicks on one of the new buttons, it shows up in their Facebook Timeline, visible to their friends, just as with the Like button. I’ve been testing the buttons out this morning, which explains why my Facebook friends have seen me “OMG!” Shannon Magrane’s audition on American Idol, among other things. (Seriously, I can’t believe Steven Tyler said that to her dad.)

Here’s my question: Is this too much? I can understand moving beyond the “Like” button, but it seems from the outside that Facebook has essentially given free rein to third-party developers to come up with any verb that they want. It feels like the pure power of the “Like” is at risk of being diluted.

Then again, maybe I’m too much of a Facebook traditionalist.

Until we get on board with the new buttons, you’ll have to let us know whether you LOVE, BOO, or MEH this new trend manually, in the comments below.

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  • Guest 01

    I am reminded about how cigarette companies were mandated to change their warning labels, because after something is seen so often, it becomes invisible.

    Online, that phenomena has been most pronounced with “banner blindness.”  Where users physically do not even see what’s in front of them (cool, our own built in editors to filter out garbage).

    So, FB will try to get our attention (with meaningless garbage), until we become blind (yet again) to their efforts.  If someone doesn’t see that this is a perpetually frustrating exercise and that truly there is little or no value to these “Like’ish” buttons that will permeate sites, then they can buy into the valuations that FB and their investors “like” to bandy about as being realistic.

    I believe in a future where someone comes along with the next generation of FB and knocks them off their throne.  Like it, Boo it, or OMG it, it really doesn’t matter.  All things must pass (particularly in social media).


  • Guest

    Congratulations to Facebook for continuing to diversify! I’ve been petitioning the firm for a “dislike” button and the “BOO” button is close enough. It’s refreshing to see a company that cares for its customers.

  • Rethabalcom

    Love! and Dislike! would have been enough for me! 

  • Amy Perrin

    It’s been almost a month, and still no love, boo, or any of the other buttons mentioned. C’mon Facebook are you waiting for an engraved invitation??

  • akaroa353

    It’s been over 10 months and still NO love, boo, or any of the other buttons mentioned here. What gives?!

  • Amy Perrin

    How come we still haven’t gotten these buttons yet???

  • Amy Perrin

    Was this article ever based on solid facts? It has been almost 3 years, and NADA.

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