Archive for the ‘social media’ Tag

The Fight for Your Right to Dislike

I like a point Andy Whitlock makes about the word ‘like’.

I’m curious about the ‘Dislike Button’ on Facebook.

I’m indifferent to the Ratings system on YouTube (YouTube knows this).

BuzzFeed lets you go WTF, OMG and LOL. I’m OK with that.

Big tech sites encourage me to share – that’s their mark of liked-ness.

The liberal media values what I have to say. But controversy ≠ great journalism.

How and when people like things can’t be controlled. That’s a good thing.

Why do any of these systems even matter?

I guess there are at least two good reasons:

1. We want to rate things. We want to comment. We might not always have opinions to share, but we can support stuff we like. We can share things that are worth sharing.

[This point is essentially ‘a crass description of web 2.0 in case you’ve not been on the internet for the last decade’.]

2. Forms of rating and commenting become a metric by which users can identify the cream of the crop in their searches, and a prompt to ‘check this out’.

So rating things is socially responsible, in a sense, because it helps the people who come along after you. Unless you’re a troll. Bad troll.

Why do Facebook users want a ‘Dislike Button’?

American FBers like the ‘Dislike Button’ more than they like God.

FBers globally don’t even like Facebook most of the time.

The group pushing the button puts its demands in these terms:

People’s opinion’s [sic] are not just to “like” something, we also have opinions opposite of that, which is why we need a dislike button.

The first bit of that statement is definitely true.

But the conclusion is more debatable…

Nobody gives 1★ ratings on YouTube

By YouTube’s own admission, most user ratings on the site are ★★★★★.

It sounds like they’re looking at an overhaul of their ratings system right now. Perhaps they’ll follow Vimeo and give just one option – ‘Like’ (♥).

People use the other options so rarely you could argue they don’t need them.

And besides, only a tiny percentage of viewers give any rating at all.

Still – there’s a problem with ‘Like’…

Andy Whitlock is bang on.

The word ‘Like’ is semantically wrong in a lot of contexts.

As you can see above, some reputable news sites sidestep the problem by not using a word at all – just a metric for shared-ness.

After all, news – historically speaking – is not the same as entertainment. I won’t ‘Like’ a news item in the way I’d ‘Like’ a film. Its role in my life is more plastic.

…and it’s personal

When news is about people (rather than ‘things’) or directly personal (like ‘I’m going to Malaysia in April’ – a true story), ‘Liking’ becomes more fraught.

How do you separate the person from the ‘thing’?

If you tell me you ‘Dislike’ what I have to say, is there an implication you also ‘Dislike’ me? Will I cry myself to sleep? Will you even care?

I’m giving Facebook a psychic high-five for not rolling out a ‘Dislike Button’. There are a lot of meanies out there, and they probably know it.

But what’s your opinion?

Do we need more options for rating? Or fewer?

What’s the alternative to ‘Like’?

Would you like a ‘Dislike Button’ for this blog post?

Bonus related links to help you ‘Like’ this blog post more

The Guardian | Was this review helpful to you?

1★ reviews of classics on Amazon

New York Times | Will You Be E-Mailing This Column? It’s Awesome

The science behind sharing news online

All Facebook | 10 Things Facebook Users Love and Hate

Yes – FBers love to sleep

Hipster Runoff | ❤ / h8 / miss

The third primal emotion of Gen-Y gets the Carles treatment

11 Tweets Worth Blogging About

So blogging is dead again. But I think this one’s still got a pulse. Hello readers! +3,000 of you last month – thanks y’all.

That said, I’m Tweeting more than blogging now. Which will come as a massive yawn to anyone who follows ‘the internet’.

For the less geeky – there’s a 60% chance you signed up to Twitter then quit.

Too complex? Too hyper? Too pointless? Bored now Stephen Fry’s out of that lift?

If you struggled, or you’re just finding your way, here are 11 great Twitterers I follow – and the main reasons why:


@undrln – “highlights from the world of advertising, marketing and design”

WHY? Most rated scoops from the undrln social bookmarking site. Diverse. Punchy. To the point.


@DAVID_LYNCH / David Lynch – “Filmmaker. Born Missoula, MT. Eagle Scout.”

WHY? The LA weather reports. And he writes like Special Agent Dale Cooper talking into his dictaphone.


@bigspaceship / Big Spaceship – “Twitter feed of digital creative agency Big Spaceship, curated by Founder/CEO Michael Lebowitz”

WHY? Shares and insights from NY’s (and the world’s?) most creative digital production shop.


@PSFK / Piers Fawkes – “Ideas & Trends Site PSFK’s Tweets: Inspiration To Make Things Better”

WHY? Highlights from PSFK HQ can’t eclipse Piers’ solo digging. He pulls out some gems, and pulls no punches on adland hypocrites.


@QtipTheAbstract / Q Tip – “The Renaissance, TWEETS IS WATCHING!”

WHY? Unlike many musicians on Twitter, Q Tip has interests beyond the pale of his own PR. Love his YouTube soul treats – a great sharer.


@lessig / Lessig – “law prof, reformer.”

WHY? The enfant terrible of copyright law is a font of knowledge for digital artists. A master of the short-form, and responsive to his followers. He “gets it”.


@iaintait / Iain Tait – “Work: Creative Director at Poke in London. Live: Brighton. Likes: Good things. Hates: Evil.”

WHY? Pound-for-pound the best ad man on Twitter. Boundless curiosity. Every bit as active and innovative as he is friendly and engaging.


@hipsterrunoff – “Hipster Runoff is a blog worth blogging about.”

WHY? Ironic post-ironic quips from the poster boy of “Am Appy” sponsored mp3 blogs. Plain funny. An indie meta-Twit.


@brainpicker / Maria Popova – “Digital anthropologist, curator of culture and semi-secret geek obsessed with brilliant ideas, data viz, smart design, sustainability, good music and TED”

WHY? I wonder when Maria sleeps. Slaves relentlessly to share and connect a wealth of A-grade art, technology, consumer and eco ideas.


@BBHLabs / BBHLabs – “Marketing Skunkworks: new models for marketing, new models for creative businesses (@malbonnington @melex @glickglick)”

WHY? Ample accompaniment to their sterling blog. Rigorous research and rich, dense presentation – full academic-style accreditation always in place. Respect.


@thefader / The FADER

WHY? Got real tired of Resident Advisor’s spammy Twit dumps. FADER pace it right. They parlay with their artists. Link to free downloads. Constant quality.

BONUS To complete a dirty dozen, here are my details:

@guybingley / Guy Bingley – “Harmless amateur”

[A Note of Caution: I’m no substitute for any of the starting 11 in this list.]

Dodge Ads on a Segway

Chances are you’re bored of Facebook. It was too easy. You just studied the hip cats and robbed their essence of cool.

But the fraud was too successful. It rained spam. Everyone wanted a piece of you. People you barely knew were firing sawn-off Super Pokes from all angles.

Marketers caught up and brands wanted their own weapons. The best marketers started making useful applications for Facebook and MySpace (Paul Isakson is worth a read on this). But people were already migrating to Twitter to get out of the cross-fire.

Now you can search Twitter posts with Tweet Scan. That could be exciting for you. You might want to find other friends who are “bored”, “happy” or “bored”. Maybe?

But Paul Chaney has identified a sinister angle to this story. By using Tweet Scan, ad men can target the flock according to their mood. And that’s their mood as they’ve stated it. Live.

There’s only one solution: escape on a Segway.

That’s right. The Segway. You can speed to social victory on a Segway.

There was a lot of flapping about the Segway. There’s a lot flapping about social networking. Segway made their own social site for Segway users. Wow. You can almost hear the tumbleweeds rolling in cyberspace.

But we can hijack these empty brand spaces. Why the hell not? Flip it around. Take it to the advertisers. Let’s get social with a Segway. At least we’ll only be harassed by Segway in the process.

That’s not too bad, if you think about it.

Segway was, and is, after all, the future.