You may have read about – or already seen, depending on where you are – the latest tweak to Facebook’s interface: the disappearance of the likes counter. Like Instagram (which it owns), Facebook is experimenting with hiding the number of likes that posts receive for users in some areas (Australia for Facebook, and Canada for Instagram).
Instagram’s recent decision to remove its “like” counter from its platform in select geographic regions is an interesting, perhaps long overdue, measure. Although recently users in Canada reported seeing the “like” counter back on for a day, the counter is currently off. The roll-out is a techno-social experiment, and there are advantages — and a few unintended consequences — of such an action.
Imagine a popular social media channel that did not display the number of “likes,” mentions, impressions, followers, engagements or any other metric to show how many times one’s content has been viewed, by whom and when. A flourishing “how-to” industry has arisen dedicated to increasing “counts” on social media, while also claiming this is the silver bullet to becoming more popular, rich and famou...[Read More]