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New “Like” and “Reblog” feature on wordpress – *dislike*

June 3, 2010

So this morning, I went on my laptop, I checked my email, I googled some news I had heard about before and I open wordpress.com.
As the english language and writing in particular are part of what this blog will be about, when I see a blog post on freshly pressed that deals with the “evil adverb” and how you should avoid it, I am reading not only the post with great interest but I think that it would be good to add this blog to my blog surfer list ( I don’t have a public blogroll yet, but follow a certain number of blogs). I don’t feel like commenting because English is not my mother tongue so I might not have the same feelings towards adverbs as a native speaker, but it’s intriguing and informative. I like this post.

Hang on..?

What is this, wordpress ?  A “LIKE” feature ??
*dislike*

So I press on this new ‘like’ section on my wp bar and I get the choice between “View all posts I like” and “Reblog this post”. Easy, peasy.
Facebook and Tumblr come to mind, and somehow, I am not happy about this new idea of the wp team.

Now, I often DO like posts on wordpress.com but not enough to fill my own blog with it. And why should I ?  Isn’t the whole idea – and spirit – of the wordpress community to create your own individual content to share with others ? Although the new reblog function might make it easier for those who do reblog to correctly give sources, and maybe the “like”  list created for my account could be just another way to bookmark interesting posts without the commitment to follow the whole blog, I feel it makes it just too easy to pull content into your blog without any original work of your own. If a blog post is relevant to my own blog, I can link to it and comment it in my own post. If I just ‘like’ the post, I might have an actual opinion about it and, more importantly, I should let the blogger know with a few words.

And why “Like” – just like in facebook?  Already, the feature frustrates me to no end over there, because instead of actually commenting on my witty remarks, critical quotes of news or quirky finds (well..), my friends often will content themselves to simply click once to confirm that they have seen it, and somehow approve. Did it make them laugh, cry, think  – can I get some real reaction ?No. Most people, even me, use and abuse of the ‘like’ because it’s quick, and I know that there is a ‘movement’ on facebook to introduce a ‘dislike’ button ( I believe some hacks to have it on your page actually exist). You read something someone posted, click. And on with the next ‘feed’. On facebook, we are consuming news and thoughts in little canape like snippets, the feeds, and in consequence we don’t want to bother with a comment. In all honesty, the way the news feed is built and used, it would probably bring down more than one country’s economy too, if everybody was commenting everything on their feed, as there is so much and we all would waste even more time on facebook.

Well, but wordpress is not facebook, is it ? I enjoy reading even longer posts on wordpress or other actual blogs. I pride myself in being part of the blogging community, for years, in different places and under different usernames, but always writing and commenting on what others write. With my own thoughts or just a compliment when there is nothing to add. Comments are what encourages most of us to keep writing in a public blog, it’s about sharing and exchanging thoughts, ideas, experiences, feelings. But to express all these, you do need to type a few words. Too hard ?

The ‘like’ function on wordpress makes it possible to acknowledge someone’s post on wp with a nod. I read that, I LIKED that. Click.

When on livejournal (yeah, I’m not ashamed) an April fool’s Day announcement was that they would introduce status updates (similar to ‘other social networking sites’), I was glad about the disclaimer. So far, my blog here has close to no comments, and I have to yet discover the sweet taste of being read on wordpress or beyond with this new project, but I know that I am not interested in readers that merely nod at me and my posts.
The hit statistics tell me enough about visitors to my blog. I want to know who reads it and why and what they think about my writing.

I signed up with wordpress because I like real blogs and real bloggers better than status updates and social networking.
Maybe I stand alone with this opinion but if wordpress thinks introducing the ‘instant’, one click features is a way to keep bloggers on the site, it may well be that it will only water down the still excellent quality this blogging community still has to offer.
Sites like facebook, tumblr and twitter, sometimes linked and entwined for even easier updates allow for easy publishing and have taken the public by storm. I see and have always read about WordPress.com as a content orientated platform, and I am glad I am finally on board.

I am just hoping that WordPress, while continuing to introduce new features to their community, will stay a true blogging platform and resist to the easy clicks. Don’t you ?

(note my cunning attempt to get comments by directly addressing to my, still imaginary, readership. oh, please someone COMMENT!)

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. June 3, 2010 01:03

    I almost feel bad for commenting, it’s like feeding an addict some crack… feh. Although I feel for you, in the “imaginary readership” part.

    At any rate, I agree. Joining WordPress was one of the best things I did, since it showed me the deeper side of the internet, one that isn’t summed up in 160 characters. People left comments (in theory) that contributed to the discussion, not just shouting “LOL” at anyone passing by.

    Now we have this drivel. It’s funny, I just did a post about this very thing right before this came out, about how people enjoy forum threads with polls because they feel like they are contributing. Now we’re just going to have a bunch of pollsters rotting their brains out with “likes”. It makes me sad.

    I know one thing for sure: I won’t be using it.

  2. sissadora permalink
    June 3, 2010 08:28

    I kind of like both sides – being able to clickety-click my way through things (like, re-post, delete, report, hate, start drooling over…) as well as write up a novel if I so like. 🙂

    Oh, and I know how you feel like. Sometimes blogging is like talking to a wall, because people aren’t quite sure if they should comment or not. Nowadays I am just happy if I get 5 page views a day, and rest assured that someone is at least looking at what I post (I don’t think Blogger had a daily page view count anywhere – so happy I moved to WordPress!).

    • June 3, 2010 12:35

      yeh..you’re right. i don’t totally dislike the easy way to show i was there (and read or saw), but I think I kind of don’t like it HERE. one of the reasons i came over to wp is that i wanted to get back to reading ‘proper’ blogs – more than just statuses. And writing. I know readership comes a lot from commenting elsewhere. . 🙂 thanks for your comment, now I’ll check out your blog ! (blogger is a bit more open to all kinds of 3rd party counters and the like, i could totally check even stalk on my visitors, but it’s still no fun without comments)

    • June 5, 2010 14:21

      google has the google analytics for the stats.

  3. June 5, 2010 14:23

    I do not like the way the like and reblogging works. Instead if it was a bookmark button which adds a post in some kind of organizable bookmark system it would have been good. But unfortunately it is not, so for me the feature will be unused.

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