I Told You So: ‘Likes’ Only On Social Media

Just about 2 months ago I wrote and published The Definitive Case For Deleting Social Media. In it, I wrote:

Then, of course, there’s the plain and obvious narcissism that’s virtually built into the whole thing and it’s damn hard to resist that tendency. After all, everyone likes to be liked, and of course, Facebook has a Like react, but not really a dislike. Twitter has a heart. So it’s heart or nothing. Instagram is the same. This distorts reality, since you’re only getting the positive feedback, there is no correction by negative feedback, except in comments or replies. Many influencers with tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, and even millions of followers never have time to go through thousands and thousands of comments. But they sure can get a LIKE!!! Tally, an entirely distorted scorecard as to how you’re really doing in the trial of public opinion. There is no dislike.

But these platforms do not want you to have access to that sort of correction-by-reality information. Lacking that is what conditions us to keep checking in, to see how many more Likes we have and we become neurotic junkies. So as the high from one post’s engagement begins to wane, we have to post something else quick, to get juiced up all over again.

Pathetic, isn’t it?

If you are stupid and wrong, social media makes you more stupid, more wrong. If you are smart and right, social media throttles your reach, limiting your feedback, compromising your ability to make corrections over time.


Some months back, YouTube began hiding dislike counts on at least some White House videos and Joe Biden speeches because it was a hilarious spectacle. Google (owner of YouTube) won’t let me find it easily, but if I recall correctly, Biden’s last SOTU speech was matched by a Trump rally and the video likes vs. dislikes for both was just knee slapping funny in the comparison, considering that at the time, Biden was still THE MOST POPULAR, TOP VOTE-GETTING PRESIDENT IN US HISTORY!!!

Apparently, the FAR RIGHT WHITE SUPREMACIST CONSPIRACY!!! is so well organized and in lock-step that it can simultaneously ensure few likes and lots of dislikes for leftist shit-and-shaming videos, while creating huge likes and proportionally far fewer dislikes on more moderate and conservative videos.

(Or, it Occam’s-Razor signals that the squeaky-weasel woke left simply are not as great in number as you would be led to believe.)

So, since I have a modest YouTube Channel myself, I get an email from YouTube API Services this morning pointing me to one of Big Tech’s “our policies have changed” thingies you get several of, per day.

An update to dislikes on YouTube

At YouTube, we strive to be a place where creators of all sizes and backgrounds can find and share their voice. To ensure that YouTube promotes respectful interactions between viewers and creators, we introduced several features and policies to improve their experience. And earlier this year, we experimented with the dislike button to see whether or not changes could help better protect our creators from harassment, and reduce dislike attacks — where people work to drive up the number of dislikes on a creator’s videos.

Interesting way to parse—”we experimented with the dislike button“—that they were in fact hiding the huge dislike count for White House, Biden, and other leftist/socialist/woke/stupid shit.

As part of this experiment, viewers could still see and use the dislike button. But because the count was not visible to them, we found that they were less likely to target a video’s dislike button to drive up the count. In short, our experiment data showed a reduction in dislike attacking behavior1. We also heard directly from smaller creators and those just getting started that they are unfairly targeted by this behavior — and our experiment confirmed that this does occur at a higher proportion on smaller channels.

Based on what we learned, we’re making the dislike counts private across YouTube…



…But as a bone-toss, they’re leaving up the thumbs-down dislike button for anyone to click at will, and as a creator you can see that [rendered useless] data. Why do I say it’s rendered useless? C’mon, why do you really click dislike? Is it because you’re trying to be constructive in order to help the video creator do better, or do you do it in more of a let’s dog pile mentality and so that others will see the building momentum? This is simply just as important as the likes. If momentum to like a video is important then momentum to dislike a video is just as important and one could reasonably argue the case that it’s more important if a creator wishes to evolve to be more things to more people over time. That is critically important for some. Not at all to me. I don’t give a fuck about dislikes, never have. But I recognize that’s just me. Mine is more of a life plan than business plan. I care only about constructive criticism and good arguments and insights with some actual thought and work applied to them.

I though we’re all supposed to be about democracy and, after all, you only get one vote. You have to be logged into your Google/YouTube account to vote either way and I believe you can change your vote. Accordingly, all dislikes represent the single choice of a single user every bit as much as do all likes.

But, “Democrats” are, and have always been more about heads I win, tails you lose than as any sort of the MEH DEMOCRACY!!! faux-high-platitudes they spout.

Well, no sense in belaboring this. It’s more of a victory for sanity and good sense.

Google and YouTube expose grave weakness in this move. They show that in spite of all efforts in all algorithmic might brought to bear, they can neither get a lot of people to like what they hate, nor to stop disliking loathsome stupid shit; or, discouraging the rallying of opposing troops to to annihilate their evil enemies.


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