Not long ago I wrote a post about my quest for Instagram likes and my fascination with people about five years my junior and younger that can pull in triple digit likes with as much as a grainy selfie. While I highlighted my desire to receive big time likes for myself at that time, I hold no animosity towards the people who scroll past my food pictures and arena images without pressing that “like” button. Quite the opposite, I actually applaud you.
I am a big believer in sparingly distributing “likes”. You see, when I go through my Instagram or Facebook feeds my thumb is not going up and down clicking away. I don’t give out likes in the way that I give out candy. Rather I reward them based on the best content that I see. That means I am not liking someone’s Snap Chat screen captured photo they post to Facebook. Or I am not liking an Instagram photo that someone took of another photo that carries with it an awful glare. Or I am not liking a photo of someone’s dog that was taken while the animal was jumping up and down resulting in a blurry mess. I refuse to pad someone’s “like count” when they are producing garbage.
Someone will get my seal of approval with a quality, creative, or appealing image. By my best estimation, I probably like one photo for every four that I see. What separates the fourth of pictures I like from the other 75% that I just pass by? Effort. As I explained at the beginning of this paragraph I need to see an attempt at a meaningful photo. You and I both know the distinction between a good photo and a bad image. If someone I follow took a quality photo of his young kid in an intimate moment I am going to like it. If someone rearranged her desk items in a creative pattern and applied a sweet filter I am going to like it. If a girl I follow who I find attractive posts an appealing image of herself I am going to like it.
I don’t do “likes for likes”. I don’t give in to people who solicit them (unless they ask me personally, then I will). I don’t have people I follow who will receive a like from me no matter what they post. Plain and simple I distribute likes to images that deserve them. When I like a photo, it is a compliment to the person who took it.
SIDE NOTE: There is one time I will like my own Instagram photo. If I post an image and it has garnered 9 likes I will go ahead and like it myself so it will display “10 likes” under the image as opposed to a long slew of nine usernames. True stuff.
I do change my philosophy up a little bit when it comes to liking Facebook comments and favoriting Tweets. But that is a blog post for tomorrow! I hold my standards high for social media photography and I think that is a good thing. Don’t Blink.