Thursday marks the 50th anniversary of the debut of Star Trek, and Facebook is going all out to celebrate the occasion. In addition to temporary profile frames that rolled out earlier this week, users’ “like” options may have an otherworldly feel as well.
While the “like” icon looks pretty much the same, save for some stars in the background, the Vulcan “live long and prosper” salute has replaced the heart as the love reaction button. Other options include Kirk (haha), Spock (wow), Geordi (sad), and a Klingon (angry).
Not everyone will see the special Star Trek reactions. According to Facebook Messenger marketing lead Lindsey Shepard, they’ll appear for “some” Trek fans — meaning you’ve liked something Star Trek-related — in the U.S. and Canada. There’s no word on how long they’ll last, with Shepard saying they’ll only be available for a “limited time.”
“In order to make this understood by all Star Trek fans, we chose the most iconic and recognizable characters and symbols from the original Star Trek series, as well as the Next Generation,” Shepard said of the move. “We also wanted to honor the original design and spirit of Reactions, so we needed visual cues that were easy to identify at a glance, like Geordi’s visor.”
The Star Trek salute isn’t the first time Facebook has temporarily altered its reactions based on a particular event. In May, the social network added a flower reaction for Mother’s Day, but it disappeared soon after. The ‘Star Trek’ reactions appear temporary, although Shepard did hint that it’s not the last time Facebook plans to do something like this.
“We may test experiences like this in the future, and will focus on community and moment-driven events like this one,” she says.