First off, I ABSOLUTELY LOVE this discussion that is going on with this, I will respond to each of your comments individually shortly after I make this post but wanted to say THANK YOU for taking the time and sharing your opinion! For those who are reading the post for the first time this is what I had posted in the morning:
“I will weigh in with my comments later and update this post but I wanted to get a reaction from my fellow bloggers on this, without my influence…Please put your thoughts in the comment section 🙂 Look forward to a lively discussion!”
Second, as promised here is my stance on the issue:
I remember when I first joined wordpress and I got my very first ‘like’ on that first post – I was ELATED! As belsbor says in his comment it is indeed a great boost! Someone out there thought my work was good enough to be liked! …Then, when I received my first comment… I was beyond thrilled.
As a business major and professional, I know how difficult it can sometimes be to get responses. Some projects never take off because of not being able to generate enough interest. Of course, this blog was not or rather is not a business venture, but it is something that I am quite passionate about and thus, generating a strong readership is important to me…Coming back to the issue at hand…as to whether or not the ‘like’ button is an enabler or an advocate, I believe it can be both and like some of you have said in your comments I too have worn both hats on different days.
Since that first initial boost of getting a ‘like’, I have felt that initial ‘elation’ become a ‘pleasantly pleased’ emotion. Although I still love it, I am thrilled to get comments as it allows me to understand exactly how much the reader liked my work or how they connected with it but I appreciate that ‘like’ none the less. I agree, it is not just an advocate for an introvert, although it can become one in many cases. Sophie L raises an excellent point that I had not thought of with regards to the language barrier and how the ‘like’ button becomes an universal tool of approval. It is like casting a vote, just like nobody puts a comment on that ballot card, it is just enough support for the candidate and in this case the author’s post. I do not see it as a negative button in any sense, and like many of you I always try to read what I have liked. As Genuine Poetry (Denise) puts it, it is a way of letting the reader know that you were there and you liked their post; however, lately I have been feeling a bit guilty of being an inactive participant due to the lack of time.
I understand that as the number of blogs I follow increases along with my readership, it will be harder to keep up with all the posts all the time…but I have caught myself using the ‘like’ button as a crutch… and I did not like it. Sometimes, I skim longer posts, like it, saying to myself that I would come back and read it thoroughly later but there are days that it doesn’t happen. It made me wonder how many others actually read the post before liking. Ronovan raises a good point about how liking after barely a second of publishing kind of gives away the fact that it never really was read… and though thankfully, I am not guilty of that, it was just something I needed to reflect on and be more conscious of. I always try my best to comment when I have the time, especially with the blogs I follow regularly and have built a rapport with, but like many of you stated, time becomes a factor on how much I can do.
In conclusion, I think the ‘like’ button can be one of the best tools to encourage fellow bloggers. But before pushing that button, ALWAYS read the post you are about to like, if you have the time to comment please do and always be conscious that you do not become one of those ‘inactive participant’ using the like button as an automated response.
Thank you to each and everyone of you for taking the time to read my work,
PS: I loved each like on this posts! I also loved the posts I liked! 😉