Thursday, October 24, 2013

Self Liking Media

Or: Like Me! Like Me! Like Me! I have opinions. Let me show you this on on Self Liking Media. Enjoy, Gentle Reader. 

I take in a lot of content on the internet. I watch YouTube videos. I have a lot of podcasts I listen to on iTunes. I use (or have used) Spotify, TuneIn, Pandora, Netflix, Vimo, Hulu, Last.fm, Bandcamp, Mixcrate, Stitcher, Blog Talk Radio, and Ustream just to name a handful. I use web site media players, game site videos, social justice media wherever I can find it.

What I am saying is that I have a lot of time where it is difficult to do anything, so I consume the content of others. I have even made a tiny little bit, so I have an idea how hard it is. As I have talked about here before: I have no problem letting folks know I dig their stuff with a plus or a like or five stars or email or whatever. I think it is (the definition of) the least we can do for those folks trying to inform, entertain, and/or educate us. 

The best creators never tell you how to feel about their creations. You should be allowed to experience it on your own and form an un-beleaguered opinion. Like something or not, you should have the ability to form that opinion based on the media itself. You should not be inundated through the piece to form an opinion you do not have yet, or badgered to change a non-glowing opinion at the end. 

Mea culpa: I have been guilty of the "like me!" mess, but I will not anymore. You get to decide what you like.

But if you put your stuff out there on a system that has an opinion system, then you have voluntarily agreed to letting people voice their own opinion on that system. I respectfully address that you get over it, or get off of those systems. YouTubers and Facebookers and iTuners and whatever: quit telling me to give you a good rating and spend that energy into your project and make it even better.

Now, contrary to what you might think, I am not dogging everyone that made something on the Internet ever and then asked you to dig it. There is a one word cure to this: if. Well, you know, and variations of it:


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For all that is good in this world, quit telling us to like your stuff and make it likable instead, okay? Okay. Thanks. Look, the creators I am addressing are giving out mostly free content: we are predisposed to like you. "Yea, free stuff!" said the Internet. Then we spend time on you, further prepping us to like you. People do not like to be wrong, so we are going to want to like you the longer we spend time on your content. 

I know, there are trolls, but they are actually a tiny fraction of people on the Internet. They are just the loudest because it is easier to shit on something than to hold it up. Sadistic lulz are no longer witty retorts, now they are usually just the flatulence of the bored. 

On perks: if you give a perk to the best opinions, good for you. But I think it does a disservice to you and your fans. How can you know what they really think if you have some raffle prize for shining reviews. A lot of the folks that hound consumers about it never give a breath to telling them what you actually think, they just want the like/plus/stars. So if your content has a problem like a faulty/misplaced light or bad levels or misinformation, who is going to tell you? It should be your fans, but you have them giving prize-eligible reviews instead. I think that can cause content creators more harm than good. You know your content's needs better than I, so take that as you will.

Down with the phenomena of Self Liking Media! Remember, you can show me some love below if you like what I do: