So I recently saw a post on a certain method used by social media sites, but I can't remember what it's called (the title above is what I thought it was called, but now I can't find the post or the term anywhere).

The term describes a method used by social media sites (e.g FB and Instagram) where the like button immediately reacts to the user's input (that is, it shows that you've liked something), but this isn't actually true. See, the truth is that the server doesn't yet know, or it's now finding out that you just liked a post/image and the client is just waiting for confirmation that the server has updated the like count for the post. Sort of like how multiplayer games (especially action oriented ones) will have the client run ahead of the server and then after the server has verified that everything is good, some catch up is done.

The best way to see what I'm talking about is to quickly open up Facebook, turn off your internet, and like a post. What should happen is that the site shows that you've liked the post.

Anyway, if anyone knows what this is called I'd greatly appreciate it if you told me. I hope those who didn't know this now know.

1 Answer 1


This is called an optimistic UI. There seems to be lots of info on it if you know what to search for - this page gives a good explanation, including options for how to handle errors if they happen.


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