I had been suffering a sense of disconnection within my online communities prior to swearing off Facebook likes. It seemed that there were fewer conversations, more empty platitudes and praise, and a slew of political and religious pageantry. It was tiring and depressing. After swearing off the Facebook Like, though, all of this changed. I became more present and more engaged, because I had to use my words rather than an unnuanced Like function. I took the time to tell people what I thought and felt, to acknowledge friend’s lives, to share both joys and pains with other human beings.
Elan Morgan stopped using Facebook's Like feature. According to her, it improved her experience of Facebook for the better. I've been doing it for a week now, and while I don't think my news feed has significantly changed, it is definitely encouraging me to comment rather than using the diminished substitute of the Like function. This means more conversations with the people that matter to me.
What I haven't done yet is to comment on posts I disagree with or question the validity of. It's something I'm trying to find a way of doing: having meaningful, respectful conversation with people I don't necessarily agree with.