Out of everything the Internet's ever created, the animated GIF may be the most universally loved. At this point, it's hard to go more than a few minutes without seeing one, but it's not like anyone's complaining: they're bite-sized snippets of comedy, a TV show or movie distilled down to a single, hysterical moment. There's an animted GIF for literally everything, whether it's a kitten falling asleep, giant explosions or someone tripping over their own feet.
The only problem is that the world's most popular social network never truly supported animated GIFs. For the most part, posting one of the pictures to Facebook has been impossible: none of the pictures will play properly, and external links take users to an entirely separate page. It was obnoxious, and as a result, most people simply avoided using GIFs on Facebook.
Finally, after what seems like years and years of waiting, that's finally about to change: thanks to the picture library Giphy, the animated pictures will actually work on Facebook.
Before you get too excited, know that there are some restrictions: the GIFs are only playable on Facebook thanks to Giphy's new embed tool, meaning that the GIFs must come from Giphy's library. Sadly, you won't be able to pull a GIF from anywhere - that being said, Giphy has an absolutely insane amount of GIFs to pull from, so it's not like users will be all that limited. Plus, it's super-easy to upload your own. You'll never be completely out of luck if your GIF isn't already on the site.
While the new system isn't perfect just yet - GIFs won't play automatically, meaning you'll still have to push the 'play' button each and every time - it's still a major improvement. Gone are the days of clicking a picture, only to be whisked away to some random (and sometimes sketchy) site - just don't be surprised if GIFs from Arrested Development and The Simpsons start clogging up your feed.
Want to start bombarding your friends with GIFs? Just head on over to Giphy, choose your GIF, and hit the Facebook button in the lower left-hand corner!