Here is a similar thought as my post the other day about social media through the lifecycle . This one is a post on 10 kinds of Facebook likes. The author only wrote a sentence or two explaining each one, so I will liberally replace his descriptions (so blame me if you disagree!!) with my own thoughts for each one. And of course, these categories would work in any reputation management environment, not just Facebook.
The basic idea is that “Likes” often have nothing to do with actual liking. They can be signals to the person posting, his/her other connections, your connections, or even to yourself.
I Saw It: this is a simple one to one communication. On the surface, you are saying you like what the person posted. But really, you are telling them that you are actively reading what they post. You haven’t forgotten about them. Or if they don’t know you, it is kind of like a “here I am – check me out” request.
Pile On: this is when there are a lot of people liking a post and you join in. You aren’t talking to the original source as much as you are declaring yourself part of the in-group. This is one of the few active communications some lurkers use because it is relatively anonymous and risk-free.
Bookmark: when you"like" something, you can find it later on your own page. So this works as a bookmark to remind yourself to come back later. You might not even like it at all in the real sense.
Lazy Like: I hadn’t thought about this one, but as soon as I read it I realized that I do it all the time. I have a lot to say (like you didn’t already know this :-)), but I need to strategize about where to spend my time. So sometimes there is a post that I would like to talk about, but just don’t have or don’t want to invest the time in. This "like" is a quick replacement – perhaps signaling to the poster or other readers that you have something to say so that they know it. But you don’t have to actually do anything.
Shine a Light: I would have called this one something else, but it is basically just a way to get the post onto your own page so that your own connections will see it. Or for people who would have seen the post anyway but perhaps trust you more than they trust the original source, you are highlighting its value for them. This is a cheap form of content curation. Perhaps we should call it a "Curation Like".
Dislike: We have all done this. You “like” it because you don’t like it, and assume everyone will know. It is an understandable business decision for Facebook not to include a “dislike” button, so this is a decent replacement.
Condolence: Similarly, sometimes there is a sad post and you don’t want to signal that you like the content, but that you like the person and feel for them. You “like” the post, and assume that everyone will know what you mean.
Reminder Like: I did change the name of this one. Have you ever posted something at an odd hour and then by the time anyone logs in, it is gone from their feed and they never see it? You can’t repost it (well you can, but . . .). So if you ‘like” your own post it reappears at a better time. It is better to use a dashboard system like Buffer, but this is good for emergencies.
Mercy: I would have called it a “Pity” like, but the idea is the same. You know someone has few connections or that no one ever responds to them. So you "like" something they post just so they get some feedback. Maybe they are a friend and you feel bad for them. Or maybe you just want to encourage them to post more. At the basic level, you are telling them that they are officially one of the in-group.
Absence: His tenth one isn’t a like, but I have felt this so I thought I would include it anyway. Have you ever posted something and no one liked it even though you thought it was worthy? Or perhaps you posted it specifically for one person, and they didn’t respond with an “I saw it’ like to confirm. It just leaves you wondering. I hate that :-).
Thoughts on these? Any to add? Any you think no one would ever really do?