There may soon be a lot less comments on GitHub, and that’s a good thing.
Today, the company is introducing emoji reactions for comments, pull requests and issues — just as you find in chat services like Slack. Instead of a responding with a full comment agreeing or disagreeing with another GitHub comment, you can just give it a thumbs up or down.
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GitHub engineer Jake Boxer:
While people have been able to include emoji in responses for a long time, using them as reactions resulted in a lot of noise. In many cases, especially on popular projects, the result is a long thread full of emoji and not much content, which makes it difficult to have a discussion. With reactions, you can now reduce the noise in these threads.
To keep things in control, GitHub is limiting the emojis we can use. There are thumbs up or down, as well as a smiley face, ‘thinking guy’ face, heart and celebratory confetti emojis.