The Facebook “Like” button demystified

by | Oct 6, 2014 | Shahnaz Blog (Previously They Throw Rocks)

I’ve been on Facebook for a while now and there have been changes over the years.  The design keeps changing where the navigation bar is on the top or on the left.  A few years ago, much to my dismay, they dismantled the status message.  And we were left with our walls that we had to post on.  In the past, walls were used for others to post on.  I guess over time, people did not miss the status message anymore.  And then came the “like” button.
In our world of technologically induced immediate needs and wants, Facebook did not wish to be left behind.  And so came the Facebook like button.  I can immediately say, “I like that” in one click of a button and it’s done.  But what do I like about it?  Who cares about that, right?  The one click concept became significant.  And over time, the concept of the “like” button has really turned to dislike.  I feel ripped off when someone clicks a like button and nothing else.   You like what exactly?  You like that I posted it?  You like the post itself?  What does it mean to hit a like?  Perhaps it’s just a nod of approval.  I’ve seen it.  It’s good.  Fine, move on.  Maybe I don’t “like” it, but it’s something I approve of or agree with it.  And all I have is the “like” button.  I’ve heard of people asking for a dislike button, but let’s stick to the “like” button for this blog shall we?
How does one quantify the “like”?  I would say, we need to give it a star rating.  Just hitting a “like” is a 1 star rating.  Yep.  1 star.  It says nothing other than, “I like it.”  And that really opens up a lot of questions.  So, let’s add a like and a comment.  Now, we are talking 3 stars.  You have the like and you’ve explained what you liked about it.  And sometimes, it doesn’t say what you liked about it, but a comment implies your interest was peaked enough to comment.  But yes, only 3 stars.  A like, a comment and a share, is the big one, 5 stars.  It says, you like it, it says why and it furthermore says you really liked it because you were willing to share it on your wall.  Which means, you liked it so much, you are willing to be identified with it.  Well, then you get into things like, just a share.  Hmm.  I would say, anytime there’s a share, it’s above 4 stars.  Several likes, several comments and several shares and you have something awesome there.  Something that’s news worthy perhaps.  But then again, I’m illogical.
What about the tiger mauling the guy in the New Delhi zoo?  It got all that and more.  Was that something news worthy?  Was that something to like?  Hmm.  Do we like to watch humans being attacked like that?  Again, really makes one question the “like” button, but let’s stick to topic.  What does it say of a video such as that, getting so many likes?  Perhaps that’s on the dark news scale.  How well is a particular form of bad news doing?  Let’s compare likes on the good news and the bad news but then you’ll turn an anecdotal blog to philosophical discussion of how our society is more attracted to the dark side.  The dark side gets more likes, comments and shares.  I find myself slipping into Star Wars here and so I must end this post before we go too far.  May this blog be with you.  *like*comment*share*repeat. :-)



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