The Twitter Change: “Like” or Dislike?

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Mikaela Millslagle | Opinion Editor

Without a doubt, our generation is one that obsesses over social media. Whenever my friend’s or peers have something funny to show me, it’s likely from Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, or YouTube. We are consumed through and through by the Internet world, and I know my group of friends loves how new updates tend to change our social media life. As of late, I have not logged in or opened my apps excessively throughout the day. Between stresses of tests and assignments, I’ve found my social media time to be fairly constricted to mornings when I wake up and evenings before I go to bed (two very bad times, might I add). Because of this, I find myself a little bit behind on new updates or trends for about a day – oops, am I getting old?

When I grabbed my phone after waking up, I opened my Twitter to scroll through my log and see if any new funny posts had been made, and the first thing to load was the “While you were away…” feature. This is definitely one of my favorite Twitter updates thus far, as sometimes it tends to have multiple tweets pulled up to the front of my log that I might not see for a longer time. One of the first tweets I read was, “Give me my favorites back.” To my confusion, this tweet had 24 favorites and it was from a pretty well-followed tweeter. I thought no more of it and continued on with my scrolling. I soon stumbled across two different anon accounts that tweeted “Only 90’s kids will remember” with two photos: a golden star, and a red heart. My first initial thought was that it was something really irrelevant that didn’t matter, but later that day my roommate made mention that Twitter had updated once again, but this time they had made a major change: no more golden stars for great tweets. Instead the social media site had opted to switch out the pretty little golden “You did it!” stars for generic, red, heart-shaped “likes.”

Throughout the week, multiple people began tweeting about their dislike for the new “likes” on Twitter, claiming that it was copying Instagram and just didn’t fit with their Twitter life. Others have gone so far as to say that Twitter has become generic, as every other type of social media uses “likes” as their tool of approval. “Favorites” were the one thing separating Twitter from the rest of the social media world. Many people were just confused about the change, but all-in-all the individuals of the Twitter world seemed to strongly dis”like” this new change.

Personally, I’m not a fan of this shift for Twitter. It’s much less exciting to read a notification that a follower “likes” your tweet. I enjoyed the notion that my tweet was a “favorite” of my followers (although these two things essentially mean the same). It’s a hard impact for the social media world, as the entire Twitter family was in shock and states of confusion at the change, but I believe that this will come to pass like many other major changes we’ve seen in the past. In a short amount of time, no one will even care that Twitter now uses “likes” instead of “favorites.” The basic tweet about 90’s kids will stop circulating Twitter logs in a few weeks, and memes using aliens, Blue’s Clues, and Chloe will lose their appeal. Users will quickly become used to the new style of showing appreciation for tweets, and that little golden star will eventually be a thing of the past, much like MySpace, AIM, and MSN Messenger. Stay strong, my fellow tweeters. You will all learn to “like” it in the end.