An exercise I began about ten days ago is no longer clicking the “like” button on Facebook, Instagram, or other social media sites.
It isn’t that I stopped liking content, but rather that I didn’t like how clicking the “like” button was nearly automatic and yet entirely devoid of human interaction.
Instead, I am commenting when I like something. Sometimes the comment is a very brief “nice picture.” Sometimes it is a more elaborate thought. And sometimes it is the simple message, “I like this.”
Yes, this means some trade offs. I do not choose to spend time commenting on everything I read. This means I do not read as many updates, posts, etc as I might otherwise. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
Often, a comment I leave is responded to with a follow up comment. No matter how brief, there is at least that sense of interaction, of meaningful connection. I find it much more fulfilling than seeing a “like”.
Let me clarify that I am not proscribing or advocating this behavior. There is no judgment call. It is simply a matter of me trying something new, seeing if I can make my social media experience more meaningful and satisfying – for me, not anyone else.
So far, I am enjoying this exercise and the results I have seen. Over time, I may reintroduce the occasional “like” but only as the rare indulgence in an otherwise healthy social media diet.
I’d like to make comments if they’re my good friends. I see more comments than likes on my WeChat because they’re my good/close friends and relatives.
People are abusing ‘like’ nowadays. I like your idea of replacing likes with comments and am seriously considering following the action. Thanks for the post!
You are most welcome. Thanks for the comment.
Ya’know this is a pretty interesting idea. I think I’ll try it. 😀
There you go!
It’s a worthy experiment and/or change to make. I feel like being more intentional about commenting, even though I’m still more liberal with the “likes” than I was before I started relying on them, has definitely led to more of those little connections and overall feeling a bit more connected in my case as well.
In the end, I suppose it isn’t really about using or not using “likes” but just being more conscious about it when we do.
good point. i may start doing the same. as i too find it pointless to keep ‘liking’ everything friends post on fb. and when i don’t do so, i feel guilty. as if i’m disliking it. but yes, a short comment is always better than a mere ‘like’.
I would think even writing the comment “like” at least shows a greater amount of effort.
Interesting approach. I think it encourages a bit more interaction beyond clicking the “like” button, which has really far too often become an automatism.
Exactly – we click “like” even before consciously evaluating whether we actually like something.
Chris, if you have time watch this documentary “Generation Like”. You’ll find it absolutely fascinating. http://youtu.be/1gmgXxB9QiA
I practically like every photo on Instagram – especially if they are airplanes.
Well, that one is easy to understand.
I like this blog entry. As a member of Xanga still (2.0), there is no option to hit a “like button”, and the footprints feature is gone, so comments are the only way to let someone know you were there. I do like to read comments, both on my entries, and others’.
It is the comment and the response to the comment that builds a conversation, right?
You were so right about this, Chris. I know you’re not advocating others to be the same, but I tried it out and I’m liking how this feels.
It isn’t necessarily that we shouldn’t “like” things – but I think there is value to being more conscious about the choice to do so.
The “like” button is handy in WP when you have no particular comment to make, but you want to let it be known you read the post.