I don’t like it when people “like” anything I post online when I don’t know the intentions of the person, or I suspect that the person has no filter and “likes” everything. It annoys me no end.
Last year, my blog was as inactive as it is possible to be but I still got around 50 likes or more on my Facebook page. It confounds me! I get so furious to even receive that ‘you’ve got 3 new likes this week’ statistic. I get paranoid about it: Are people with fake profiles using my page to seem authentic? Am I being used in some bigger troll propaganda? Why will a guy who clearly isn’t a reader even be interested in this page? Does Tame SheWolf seem like a pornstar name? Why do they simply ‘like’ and interact with no other posts on the page? What is their agenda?
I hate even random Twitter followers. Any activity that I don’t approve of triggers a string of questions- Why would this teenage girl follow me? Does my content (retweets and complaints) appeal to teenagers? Why does this marketing brand think I will follow back out of politeness? Why would anyone follow me when they have nothing in common with me (not even one tweet) and they don’t even read my blog?
This is not limited to my blog-related social media profiles. I totally get uncomfortable with unnecessary likes on my status updates on my personal Facebook profile. If I’ve posted a feminist rant or just an observational rant, I hate it if someone I know… like, I KNOW… is sexist or does the exact same thing I am ranting against likes my post. I just lose my calm! And it takes everything in me to withhold myself from calling them out. I am not ranting against that person in particular, but I still am so irritated at the cognitive dissonance and the complete lack of reflection. I am screaming in my head: What are you liking this for? Supporting this statement and then going on about your life, as if I didn’t just virtually slap your behaviour?
Then, there’s the other type of people, who disagree with what I say but would not comment just ‘react’ with a laughter emoticon (in response to a solemn post) or an anger emoticon (in response to a funny post). Comment, no? Why should I drag be that person who has to drag them into a disagreement? They want to be heard and not heard at the same time? Like, my god, why don’t they just unfollow me than simmering inside! [What I learnt from these dissonant ‘likes’ was that the reactions to my post are not a reflection on me, but on the post. Basically, it has taught me to disconnect from what happens to a content after I have posted it. But have I really, truly learnt this lesson thoroughly? Nah.]
The other thing that has my metaphorical soul twist and turn inside my very real body is- loyalty. I can’t bear a ‘like’ out of loyalty. It is okay if you agree with me, and you generally agree with me and therefore, you like my status updates. BUT, when I know that that’s not what you really think, and you liked it out of loyalty and kindness, it makes me seethe inside. If someone likes every single one of my post, I chafe against it. Why. Why. WHY. I don’t need this loyalty and unfiltered fanship.
I get uncomfortable because that write-up did not deserve that awesome, kind person’s thumbs up. I don’t know how people accept adoration gracefully, and I, therefore, become suspicious of people who encourage that blind enthusiasm to stroke their egos. Because I know I am a mess. If you adore me, you should know that I am absolutely terribly human. If you ‘like’ something with the awareness that I have been stupid more times than I have been smart, I can accept it. You have to acknowledge that some of my posts are stupid and therefore, not ‘like’ it. I will accept your comment even if it breaks my heart a little, but I can’t accept a mindlessly kind ‘like’. I think, I get so upset because the person’s opinion matters to me, and when I know they don’t really agree and still like it, I feel as if I have forced that ‘like’; as if they can’t disagree with me anymore or express how they truly feel; as if I will be betrayed if not for the show of solidarity; as if I have given rise to this dishonest space between us.
I know I have over-thought this but really, how can anyone just like for the sake of like?
PS: My boyfriend has been banned from interacting with any of my tweets because I am embarrassed by his incessant ‘likes’. It’s as if the only person who talks to me in this void called Twitter is him. That’s even more pathetic than silence. It’s a matter of self-respect.
P.PS: How does social media marketing even sustain itself with these bullshit statistics to measure engagement? Anything else is more efficient than ‘likes’ as a measure.