Why I Stopped Liking Your Blog Posts

The gladiator must die.

It’s not you, it’s me.

You may have noticed that I have stopped liking your blog posts.

I am waging my own personal war against the Like button here on WordPress, and your blog postings are collateral damage.

It just got to the point where, after getting the zillionth fake Like from some blogger I knew had never bothered to read my latest post, let alone taken the time to form an opinion of it, I decided that  if I have something to say, I’ll say it, and if not, I’ll keep quiet and wait for your next post.

It doesn’t mean I don’t like your most recent post, you know, the one about when you were five years old and you were walking with Grandpa Lou and he stopped and showed you an autumn leaf, and the leaves falling outside your house right now, why, they look just like that leaf, only the ones outside your house all smell like pee because the Nickelson’s cat has a urinary tract infection?

I LOVE that post, but I’m not going to Like it.

And I’m not going to Like that photo you just posted of the sun setting behind that pile of old brick pavers and  broken fence posts in your backyard, even though that must be the seventh picture of the sun setting in Minnesota you’ve posted this month already and really, do you think I don’t know what a setting sun looks like?  We have sunsets in Pennsylvania, too.  And why don’t you clean up that mess in your backyard so your wife stops bitching about it?

But I love that post.

hombre guapo

Julio.

And don’t expect me to Like that post about your vacation to that

mujer misteriosa

Or does it say Julia?

swanky Caribbean resort where you drank $1 Pina Coladas every night and you woke up on the beach the last day with a New York Giants football helmet on your head and a wadded up piece of paper in your hand, all sweaty and smudged with the name “Julio” (at least, you think it said “Julio”) written on it and you couldn’t remember how you got there.

So I’m telling you right now, don’t go thinking I don’t love your posts just because I stopped Liking them.

Royalty free stock photos including the images in this post can be found at Stock.XCHNG.

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51 thoughts on “Why I Stopped Liking Your Blog Posts

  1. Karen says:

    I originally wrote this post a couple of months ago, but I was discouraged from publishing after I sent a draft to a friend who didn’t think it would be received well. The theme for this month’s NaBloPoMo is “risk” so I figured now would be the time to take a chance . . .

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    • Amanda says:

      I hate the like buttons. So I’m glad you won’t take it personally when I don’t like any of your posts. If WordPress self-hosted ever makes that a core feature, that’s the time I will leave for another solution.

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      • Karen says:

        You know, the fact that WordPress.org does not have the Like button should be a selling point to get people to go WP.org and dump WP.com. I may have to really consider it now–thanks for pointing this out.

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        • strugglingwriter says:

          May I butt in just a moment. The one thing that .org doesn’t have is the community, the built in dashboard thing. I have both, a .org and a .com. The .com blog (strugglingwriter.wordpress.com) gets nearly 100 views a day. My .com (paulliadis.com/blog) gets 5 to 10 views a day. That is frustrating.

          My regular readers have made the switch with me to the .com, but I don’t get those random views like I do here.

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          • Karen says:

            Thanks for butting in. 🙂 Wow, that’s really interesting. I’m in a (seemingly) endless discussion with a friend about the best ways to generate blog traffic short of posting naked pictures of myself. It’s a real difficulty–I don’t have any answers. I share your frustration.

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            • strugglingwriter says:

              In the old days you used to be able to leave a comment somewhere and get at least one click back to your blog. I’m not sure that works now.

              I’ll keep the naked photo idea in the back of my mind, in case my blog grows too fast and I want to scare people away 🙂

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  2. MommyVerbs says:

    Well then. I won’t like this post either, but don’t think that I didn’t love it, really. 🙂 And you had me when you tagged this with a $1 Pina Coladas tag! I’m with you…since arriving in WordPressville, I’ve found the neighbors to be sincere and genuine, except for the few that I found to be clicking thumbs ups, or in this case, little blue stars, leaving me curious as to how they did that without my stats showing a singe visit. Hmmm. Magic? I thought. Or maybe they just liked the title? Or maybe they liked the “idea” of my blog, but not the actual words I strung together. Alas. I will support your boycott of the little blue-starred like button. And…Congrats on the Freshly Pressed shout out…again. You. You are awesome.

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    • Karen says:

      In defense of the Likers, I don’t believe if I subscribe to your blog via email and like it from the email, that it will show up as a visit to your blog in the stats (someone more knowledgable please chime in and correct me if I am wrong) so some of those Fake Likes you think you’re getting may actually be genuine Likes.

      I actually do still Like posts because I have the Posts I Like widget going on in my sidebar, and I like to help out other bloggers where I can, but I just about never Like a post w/o commenting, and I mostly comment w/o Liking.

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  3. Katie says:

    I totally support your non-liking. I can’t tell you how many of the same people I see liking my blog, but never commenting or even VIEWING my page. Um, sorry, I’m not going to check out your page. I don’t have time for all that.

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    • Karen says:

      Ha! Hey Katie 🙂 I know folks are crunched for time but if we want other folks to comment and interact on our own blogs, we need to do that on other blogs. We can’t expect folks just to love us and not be willing to shower the love around. Wow, that sounded a little dirty there, didn’t it?

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  4. slepsnor says:

    I’m almost at this point too, but only because it’s taking up so much time reading through all the posts. It does make me wonder how a person can gauge their blogs ‘success’. Is it views, likes, or comments that prove you’re successful? Or is it just personal preference?

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    • Karen says:

      I think it’s a success if we enjoy doing it and continue to do it.

      Personally, I think we have an obligation as members of this community to interact and engage with one another. Plus, I think it’s fun. Other folks don’t view their blogs in this way, and I got into a very heated exchange with another blogger when she complained about a lack of time. Listen, I have the time to write some stupid post about Coconut Bras (or whatever) I should have to time to acknowledge and recognize someone else out there who’s working and struggling along with me on this blogging thing.

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      • slepsnor says:

        I agree. Personally, I do read a lot of posts that I like, but there are times where I just don’t know what to say about it. This happens a lot when I read poetry. I read it a few times to see if I can think of anything besides ‘great poem’. So, I’m still at the point where I see the ‘like’ button as a wordless ‘good job’. Maybe that will change some day since I’m now looking at a list of 15 blog posts that I have opened to read and comment on this morning. And this is a slow morning.

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  5. klsprout says:

    Well, I knew I liked your blog, but this seals the deal – where are you in PA? I grew up 40 miles northwest of Philly. I now live in Atlanta, but I’m a Yankee at heart, and have an abiding love for all things Pennsylvanian.

    Like

    • Karen says:

      I’m in Bucks County, but originally from New England (Connecticut). I’ve lived in and around Philadelphia for about 14 years now, but it still seems foreign to me. I mean, pretzels for breakfast? What is wrong with these people??? 😉

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      • klsprout says:

        I’ve never had a pretzel for breakfast, myself – must be a city thing. I didn’t hang around in the city a whole lot while I was growing up (I lived in farm country), but a few years ago, my husband and I spent a night in Philly. I walked down the street, spread my arms, and said, “These are my people! My cranky, crabby people! I am one of them!”

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        • Karen says:

          Hey, just a heads up neither your name nor your Gravatar image links to your blog. I follow you, so I can get to your posts, but you might want to fix that so that others who see you around can check out your blog.

          Here’s the link to the blog, for folks who are interested http://klsprout.wordpress.com/

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  6. farmdance says:

    Karen, I’m glad you took the risk and posted this and I don’t care even care if you like any of my posts which so far have been test written because I couldn’t figure out how the hell to post a schnazzy photo of a sunset ” from Pennsylvania, by the way” which I’ sure you recognize. I’m right with you on the likes and I’d like to share more of my opinion but I don’t have the time right now because I have a six day old baby goat in my kitchen, and she’s in need of a bottle, the pellet stove is in need of a refill and I desperately NEED a cup of coffee. Whether or not I ever have time to post again, I need you to keep doing it because, I have a pretty chaotic life and I don’t have cable and you are smart and funny and I love reading what you have to say! So as you can see I have a lot of needs today and I have to get to work! Namaste

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  7. mindymwm says:

    This makes a lot of sense. I don’t often “like” a post, but since we are all writers/creators/artists who are craving feedback (otherwise we would not have public blogs), why not take the time to comment instead of merely clicking an icon? Great post.

    Also, I love your sense of humor. 🙂

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    • Karen says:

      Thanks 🙂 I’m not really bashing the Like button and lots of folks have made good points here about why they use it (I still use it!) but, yeah, wouldn’t we all rather have comments? And if we’d all rather have comments, we better start leaving some.

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  8. Nandini Godara says:

    Well I certainly read all posts that I “like” but I do understand what you mean (i’m now terrified that no one has read my blog. Great). I do comment sometimes when a particular piece moves me enough to talk about it. But sometimes it’s really difficult to comment on a post without stating the obvious. And poetry is the most difficult to comment on. If I say i was moved or the poem was beautiful, even though I really mean it, it sounds as fake as “liking” it. I feel that since I can’t appreciate someone’s writing with similar flair, it might come across as insincere (wow, this is a very long comment!). So I often comment on blogs that I follow, every now and then, to let them know how much they inspire me. With that in mind, I have only just discovered your blog and there’s very little you can say on here that will keep me away!! (this is a figure of speech because I want to say “nothing you can say” but I don’t want to be contractually obligated)

    Cheers! 🙂

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  9. strugglingwriter says:

    Yeah, I really don’t like the like 🙂

    I get a bunch of “likes” but very few comments. A like without a comment to me means the person didn’t read what I wrote or didn’t like it enough to be bothered to tell me for real.

    Like

    • Karen says:

      I don’t think that’s true (that if someone only Likes they did not read the post). I once unfollowed a blogger who I thought was giving me Fake Likes (they liked every post, and never commented) and then I ran into him on another blog and he replied to my comment over there about how much he liked my blog, and that I was just wonderful and perfect in every way. 😉 I think most Likes are genuine, but I feel we should all (including myself) make more of an effort beyond just clicking Like.

      Like

  10. Sebastian March says:

    The tip-off to the fake Like is when someone Likes your blog a couple of seconds after you post it. I realize there are speed readers out there, but nobody reads a 500 – 1,000 word post and decides they like it in two seconds.

    But yeah, nothing against Likes in general. Some people hit that button when they truly enjoy a post, but maybe they don’t have a lot to say about it other than, “Really liked it,” and what does that add to the Like? Some people make fake comments too. You’ll see them make the exact same comment on other blogs, usually something vague, with lots of exclamation points:

    “Yes, yes, really, really liked this post!!!”

    “So true! So true! I totally identify with this!!!”

    I’ve been tempted to put something really awful in the middle of an otherwise mundane post, something like, “And that’s when I decided the child must die,” then see who comments, “Yes! So true! Really loved it!!”

    Admit it. Waking up on a beach with a New York Giants football helmet actually happened to you, didn’t it?

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    • yourothermotherhere says:

      Just a comment about clicking right after you post…

      More often than you would think, I am reading my “Follow” list and a new posting will come up that I go and read right away because I am interested otherwise I wouldn’t be wasting my time on here. I think if someone has taken the time to write a post, it’s important to them and I want to read it.

      Like

      • Karen says:

        I know–they’re a cynical bunch, aren’t they? Not all Likes are Fake!

        And I can’t believe I’ve done a complete 180º turn on this issue, and I’m defending Likes!

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    • Karen says:

      Hey–are you back blogging? Or is my Reader just messed up and I have been missing your posts? I looked for you for my end of year post, and I thought I saw your blog was deleted. Anyway, Welcome Back or Glad to See You’ve Been Here All Along (whichever applies).

      I agree with a lot of what you say. Sometimes a post leaves no room to comment. There’s just nothing to add, and commenting “Like your post!” just does not add to the discourse. I do find myself commenting “Funny stuff” pretty frequently when a blog post has made me laugh. But I really mean it. (Honest. I do.)

      To answer your question, no, I’ve never woken up with a New York football Giants helmet on my head and not known how it got there. Every time that’s happened, I’ve known how it got there.

      But the Nickelson’s cat did pee on my running shoes when I left them outside on the back step one night. Stupid cat.

      Like

    • Karen says:

      It’s a Fake Like. 😉

      Yeah, I really do try to leave a comment because I value the comments I receive. And plus, I love the sound of my own voice, and I like hearing it on everyone’s blog. 🙂

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  11. Joyce says:

    I get some of those myself…serial likers. Some people “like” them so quickly I know for sure they could have not possibly read them.

    It reminds me of when I first got my own apartment and my own mail and I would get something in the mail that looked like a check and I would get SO excited, except it wasn’t a check, it was like a fake check that the car lots send out to try to get you to come finance a new car. It’s that same feeling…you get a “like”, and feel so honored that someone has taken the time to acknowledge your little creation, and then you’re like “OH. It’s that guy trying to sell prints of his photographs of the Canadian wilderness.”

    But…a like from a follower with whom I have interacted is just fine with me. Those don’t raise suspicion.

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    • Karen says:

      You know, I’m thinking more and more about this and I’m wondering if we all aren’t just a horribly suspicious bunch, or pathologically insecure. Is it not possible that someone might actually just like a post and just Like it? Are our blogs just so awful that we can’t fathom someone just wandering along and Liking it?

      And, um, I bought some of those Canadian wilderness prints. Now I feel like a fool.

      😉

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  12. writermomangela says:

    I agree sometimes ‘like’ feels a bit odd. I mean should we really ‘like’ a post about how you are miserable? 🙂

    Like

    • Karen says:

      Yeah, there should be some other option like, “Support!” (to indicate “I’m with you!”) or “Present!” (to indicate you were actually there and saw the blog post). I just saw another blogger post that she just found out her husband was having an affair and she would be taking a hiatus from blogging to deal. Not to make light of her situation, but I wonder how many Fake Likes she’ll get for that post . . .

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  13. Sheila says:

    That’s OK. I knew you didn’t like them and I’m not angry with you. I do like your post though. Honest. I even visited it.

    Like

  14. Julia says:

    Just wanted to say that this post (and the conversations that followed here) inspired me to get more involved with the blogging community. Well done!
    My usual blogging stance has been “Well, I barely have time to write my own – so I must not have time to comment on others.'” But you reminded me that the more I participate with fellow bloggers, the more I will enjoy the whole experience…it’s not just about writing into a vacuum and then disappearing for the rest of the week. I really do enjoy leaving thoughtful responses. It’s not some chore that has to be crossed off a list!
    Anyhoo, thanks.

    Like

    • Karen says:

      OMG, I totally guilted you into commenting, didn’t I? 😉

      What makes blogging unique compared to other forms of writing is that you do get to interact immediately with your own readers and other bloggers (and their readers) through the commenting system. To me, that’s one of the advantages of blogging and I think it’s unfortunate that there are bloggers who don’t fully utilize or appreciate that aspect of the form. There are bloggers who view their blog as a megaphone, where they stand on a soapbox and shout out at an audience. That’s ok, and there are lots of successful blogs that do that, but it doesn’t interest me because I like to talk, too, as well as hear other ideas and viewpoints that are new and different or from another perspective.

      And I sincerely believe in being a good citizen of the blogosphere, and that means reading posts and commenting and even Liking!

      Like

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