Facebook originally wanted nothing to do with GIFs as they feared it would make the site look messy and cluttered. Seeing as how everywhere else has embraced them, Facebook had no real choice to get on board with them and begin playing nicely. If you want to post a GIF on Facebook, you can. Here’s how.
Love them or loathe then, GIFs are everywhere. Most of them are lame or just plain dumb but a few can be very clever indeed. If you’re into GIFs and want to share them far and wide, you can. It isn’t as easy as it could be to post a GIF on Facebook though.
What is a GIF?
A GIF is a Graphics Interchange Format image. It isn’t always a single image but can also be a series of frames encapsulated within a single image file. That is why they can contain animations as the container plays the series of frames repeatedly to deliver the intended effect. Technically, a GIF file is a static image and a moving file is an Animated GIF but we refer to both types as GIF files.
Posting a GIF on Facebook
Not so long ago, you had to create a GIF file on your device, upload it to Giphy or Imgur or somewhere and link to it in your Facebook post. While you still have to do that in some circumstances, Facebook now directly supports GIFs and can host them directly on the page.
To add a GIF to a post or comment:
- Compose your post or comment as usual.
- Select the small gray GIF icon in the input box.
- Select from trending GIFs or search for one in the search bar at the top.
- Select it to add it.
There are a lot of pre-selected trending GIFs available from within the selection box. Scroll down the box to see more, the list is endless it seems. Otherwise, add your search term to the box at the top to find one more suitable.
Posting a GIF in your status in Facebook
If you want to use a GIF in a status update in Facebook you still have to do it the old fashioned way. That means creating or uploading a GIF to a third party site and linking to it in your status update. It doesn’t take long.
- Find a GIF you want to use in your status update.
- Select Copy Link on the right of the GIF.
- Select Short Link and copy it.
- Paste it into your Facebook status update.
- Edit it if you like and add any comments.
The GIF should appear in your update as soon as you add the link. You can then remove the short link from the post itself if you don’t want it showing and the GIF should remain in place.
Creating an animated GIF in Giphy
There are thousands of GIFs out there that express pretty much every situation or emotion imaginable. If you cannot find the one that sums up the situation perfectly, you can create your own. It is quite straightforward to do even if Giphy themselves don’t make it that clear.
- Find an image or video you want to use and upload it to the GIF creation page here. If you want to make an animated GIF you’re going to need a series of images to create the animation.
- Order the images to create the animation you’re looking for.
- Add a duration so the GIF knows how long to run before it loops.
- Add a caption, effects, tags or whatever you want to the series.
- Select Create GIF to do just that.
- Edit and review your GIF before sharing it.
You can use a video section if you prefer, just upload the video to Giphy, set the start time for the first frame of the GIF and the duration. The timing may take a little working out to complete the loop at exactly the right time but it isn’t hard. Then complete the process above by adding any captions or tags before saving.
Once complete, use the Short Link as above to share it on Facebook or wherever you want.
It is much easier to post a GIF on Facebook than it used to be but given that this is Facebook, it isn’t always as easy as it could be. Now at least you have an idea of how to do it.
Know of any other ways to post a GIF on Facebook? Any neat tools to create animated GIFs? Tell us about them below if you do.