Update: The addition of the plane react is unintentional. More information below, including a statement from Facebook.
Some Facebook users are reporting being able to react to comments and statuses with a plane emoji. There are also rumors of a fire react and the return of the Thankful flower react (previously a temporary reaction available on Mother’s Day). But we’re left scratching our heads about the plane react for two reasons: First, what does it even mean? And secondly, why do we need a plane react when Facebook wouldn’t even reinstate the Pride month rainbow react?
How to get the plane react
If you’re ready to use the plane react, first, tell us how you want to use it. (Maybe it’s to tell some hoser to “take off,” eh? That’s the best we can figure.)
Just kidding. So first, you’ll want to update your Facebook app. You’ll want to make sure to have version 22.214.171.124.79. From there, clear the cache by going to Settings – > Facebook -> Storage and then “Clear Cache.”
Then, just hold down the “like” button and the reactions will pop up. You’ll probably see a second angry react:
Press the second angry face, labelled “React,” and you’ll get the plane. Some users are reporting that sometimes they’ll see the plane instead of the second angry face, and others have reported seeing a fire react and the “Thankful” react, illustrated with a purple flower.
So far, these instructions only seem to work on the Android Oreo OS; iPhone users are currently out of luck. If you use Facebook on a desktop machine, you might have better luck, but so far, there’s no consistent method to get the plane react to appear on that platform.
Why a plane react instead of the Pride react?
Last year, for Pride month, Facebook offered a rainbow flag Pride react. Though it only lasted during June for most countries, it was well-received. Facebook users Pride reacted on everything — including anti-LGBT politicians’ posts — and the world was good.
But this year, Facebook announced they were doing away with “custom reactions for major holidays or moments in culture,” and thus, the beloved Pride react died an ignoble death. (But at least we got Facebook frames for Pride … that no one used.)
Why a plane react? It turns out it’s a bug. Facebook said the plane react was “created as part of an employee hackathon and wasn’t cleared for takeoff.” So, if you want to plane react to things, you’d better hurry.
But if Facebook is looking for things to add, a pride react would be nice. Though, honestly, something even better to add would be actual moderation policies that don’t favor hate groups.
Just a suggestion.