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Why Smokey Robinson should redesign Facebook

July 16, 2014

smokey

Facebook.  There’s an inherent problem with the economy of “likes”.  We crave them and we’re anxious to bestow them.  “Likes” offer affirmation and validation.  They justify the effort of the post.  They show we care.   In many ways “like” nowadays refers to the person  posting rather than the thing liked  – although sometimes the “like” function can appear very awkward.

What are we supposed to say when we receive a post along the lines of “I’ve just been diagnosed with terminal cancer” or “As this reporter surveys a scene of Hellish carnage…”

Such posts deserve recognition but a “like” seems callous in the extreme. I don’t “like” either your personal or your collective tragedy but I want to express something. I’ve long thought that we just need to click on something that just says “empathy”.  In other words, we should be invited to second an emotion.  And this is where Smokey Robinson can save us.

Smokey Robinson can always helped us with our empathy.  Indeed, thanks to Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, this wicked world is slightly more empathetic than it might have been.  For a while it occurred to me that Facebook could usefully employ a “Tracks of my Tears” response click, as well as (on rare but very pertinent occasions) a “Tears of a Clown” response click.  But then I decided that seconding an emotion covered every conceivable form of affirmation and is the only click we really need – Motown’s answer to the Latin “Ita Vero”.

And perhaps we should actually hear Smokey Robinson singing a bit of “second that emotion” every time we clicked. . And we’d never ever tire of it.

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One Comment
  1. I second the motion. On occasion I have also wished for a “hate this” button…

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