Stars and Hearts

Twitter just announced that “favorites” will now be called “likes” and will be represented by hearts instead of stars. In part they say:

You might like a lot of things, but not everything can be your favorite.

The heart, in contrast, is a universal symbol that resonates across languages, cultures, and time zones. The heart is more expressive, enabling you to convey a range of emotions and easily connect with people.

The term “favorite” has been used in this context for a long time on the web. Browsers often called bookmarks “favorites”. Even when they didn’t use the term, they used a star. Why? Probably because in handwritten notes, you star important points; rarely do people heart them. And as Jimmy Fallon mentioned, you don’t stay at a 5-heart hotel or leave a 5-heart review on Amazon; stars are used for these purposes.

Using a heart attaches emotion that may not exist. While a heart says “I like – or maybe even love – this,” a star says, “I want to come back to this.” The star is more flexible, really.

I don’t think this is the right move. It may have been better to change “Favorites” to “Starred”. 💔