You’ve been trained to respond to the Facebook like button just like Skinner’s rats were trained to respond with a food pellet reward. Facebook may have had a more noble idea in mind when they created their “Like” button, but the food pellet principle still applies. Each time you click a “like,” your brain circuits are activating your brain’s pleasure center by releasing more of that feel-good neurotransmitter dopamine.
The Pleasure of the Facebook Like Button Click
Think for a moment about how much pleasure your brain gets out of clicking on the Facebook like button by being intrinsically reward for
- showing support, appreciation, thanks or kudos to others
- doing a favor to help someone else increase their Facebook profile
- recognizing the value of the information
- sharing with friends and others who should know about it
- increasing your image in the eyes of friends and others by showing approval
- doing something that is easy and without a hassle
The Habit of the Click
However, there’s also a more devious brain response being activated, and that’s the unconscious habit response. In this case, it’s the embedded command to respond without giving it much, if any, thought based on a recognizable visual image.
The “Like” button increases chances of a click as the brain has a habit of responding to commands. In this case the one-word command “Like.” Also, there is an embedded brain association to “like” that is triggered by the thumbs-up image and the color of the blue Facebook icon.
Not every brain will automatically respond to the “Like” button. There’s critical thinking that comes into play for some, but chances increase if the brain has developed a fairly regular habit of the click.
There is no Dislike Button
Also, notice that Facebook doesn’t give you the option of a “Dislike” button. Hmm… I wonder why?
According to “Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s CEO, … the dislike button will not be a part of Facebook:
The like button is really valuable because it’s a way for you to very quickly express a positive emotion or sentiment when someone puts themselves out there and shares something. Some people have asked for a dislike button because they want to be able to say, “That thing isn’t good.” That’s not something that we think is good. We’re not going to build that, and I don’t think there needs to be a voting mechanism on Facebook about whether posts are good or bad. I don’t think that’s socially very valuable or good for the community to help people share the important moments in their lives.
Facebook included negative emotions in Reactions — sad and angry, but they were very explicit in their lack of desire for a straight-up dislike button.”
The Trained Likers
Then there are some people who are so well trained to “like” that they are unconscious of their actions. They “like” just about anything for no reason at all.
Here are 10 unexplainable recorded “likes” for these Facebook posts.
- “I am sad today.”
- “Please tell our relatives and friends that the burial of my grandmother is on M onday.”
- “It is a shocking news my brother died with heart attack. May his soul rest in peace.”
- “I have a headache.”
- “My project proposal was disapproved.”
- “The party was canceled due to heavy rain.”
- “Got to go to the dentist for tooth extraction.”
- “Bad day today.”
- “You are arrogant and I don’t want to talk with you anymore.”
- “I am grounded.”
If you need a break and want to feel good, you can always turn to Facebbook and click some “likes” for a little brain pleasure center activity. Yes, I know there are other things that will excite it even more, but we’re just sticking to business here.
And, in case you’re in the “like” mood, you can “like” anything on my Facebook fan page at http://www.facebook.com/mwbfp In lieu of a feed pellet, please accept my sincere appreciation and thank you for the “Like.”
Question of the Day
Do you find yourself clicking the “like” button as a conscious intention or do you methodically click as an alternative to leaving a comment?
Image: Pixabay 597107
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