I’m considering a consolidation of the Reaction options below each post. Showing too many options is unnecessarily complex and lessens the effect of any individual Reaction. I can see justification for most of them because they have distinct meanings: You can Like something without Agreeing with it, for example. But if we were to drop anything I think Insightful could go, because its meaning generally overlaps with Agree or Like. Through some quick research I also found that Insightful is used far less often than the other positive Reactions.
I don’t want to make this change without your input, though. So if you have a strong opinion either way, let me know.
If it were my choice, I would remove Like because Agree and Like are pretty much the same thing, and Like to me approaches trite because it is overused.
Like Nick, I don't use any of them that often.
»Like« in my honest opinion is something like a Facebook trademark now and you never can be sure what happens when you click something that says »like«.
The »agree« and »disagree« functions seem o.k., but i'm not aware of their function at all, except the fact that you have to hover them to see what's the answer most people agreed to.
If those metrics/numbers would be visible without hovering and in a stackoverflow.com manner (number of votes/agrees visible in front of each comment) they might help. This of course assumes a question was posted. For regular discussion that don't require a »best anwer« or similar it's a different story.
I think they all should stay. I certainly disagree that "like" and "agree" are redundant, and in fact I think "like" is the most indispensable of the reactions.
I can think of a few more that might be useful, but there's always the workaround of simply replying.
If anything i'd grey out the black flag because it's dragging too much attention to my taste, to opacity 0.4 or so, if possible.
Relatedly (I hope), I feel that it is unintuitive that "Flag" is the one reaction that always shows. It seems like the marker for the collection of reactions should be a neutral word, not one of the reactions itself. Perhaps a mediumish grey "Respond ▶" or "React ▶" might be more friendly?
Further, it triggers not only the fly-out of other reactions, but also creates a drop box of sub-reactions; this seems overly complex. (Also, are "abuse" and "troll" that different; do they garner different responses from the moderators?)
I do want to finish by saying I love this site, both for its quality of posters and for its clean and quick presentation.