The Game of Likes (Split from some thoughts thread) (Update)

Is the problem of likes on places like Facebook simply the fact that they act as an indirect judgement of merit of your own posts, or that they provide a data source for their prediction mechanisms, and will promote similar posts to the one you liked to the forefront? Likes here kind of do the former, although I've not noticeably got significantly better in getting likes over the years myself, but at least in my usage of the forum, it doesn't do any of the latter, which is where I find the usage of likes to be more problematic.
Likes (especially on FB) are perfect for training bots (learning what kind of words/phrases trigger the most reactions in people), as well as building accurate psychometric data about individuals.

I don't mind ED knowing I like posts regarding the Pyra though.

Thinking about it, I think more serious problems occur when dislikes and emojis as reactions occur. After that happens, it never seems okay to simply think "well that post was quite nice".

I also wonder, seeing how this thread is over four years old, how culture has changed as a direct result of the affects of social media. On the surface, it appears to me that it has become more childish, highly reactionary and prone to overblown tantrums. That is, at least if one considers leaders of certain countries as an example of that cultural shift...
I've not really been exposed to emoji yet, so I don't really understand them. Are they mainly negative in response to the post above?

Yes, one leader does seem to be quite the fan of social media, but in our homeland by comparison we seem to have ended up with a manchild who is not known for his social media penchant, so who knows if the quiff to end all quiffs has become that due to social media or was like that anyway. The biggest problem I can see in his posting stream is reactions to fox news, not joining the twitter circlejerk.
I've not really been exposed to emoji yet, so I don't really understand them. Are they mainly negative in response to the post above?

Not sure I understand them myself either to be honest, but I do feel that there has been a slightly negative evolution in how people write responses these days... at least I've been seeing that in text & email replies I recently have been getting from friends and acquaintances.

To go back a little, I feel the first indications of a shift was with a preponderance of exclamation marks, through LOL and the inexplicably histrionic ROTFLMAO. Just seems so excessive.

Just recently I got a text message with emoji, similar to: :'(:'(:'(:'( (although they were depicting a head rolling with tears of laughter). And I'm left thinking, was it so funny? I understand the need to evoke a little emotion sometimes where there's a lack of face-to-face contact, but such exaggerated affectations appear either just fake or emotionally numb.

It's like if someone swears all of the time, then those words just become angry noise words; clutter that get in the way of clearly expressing an opinion or thought.

What's funny is, although I feel that it's a lack of effective vocabulary that leaves some people resorting to written forms of histrionic gesticulation (in the form of emoji), there is no sense of that on this forum. It is something I saw all too often on Facebook (and to a lesser extent on Twitter), before I finally gave up on it years back...
I've been resisting the use of emojis pretty hard and at least in the online circles I frequent nobody uses them unironically. I also really hate their design. Yes, it's not really part of the spec, but they look ugly on every relevant platform to me.
They're really popular with the general population it seems. Excessive use is kinda the mark of a "normie". Even though I don't usually want to label people like that it's just... hard not to.

Use in decent amounts would be fine if the designs weren't so bad... but that's just my opinion I guess. Well, all of this post is.
I was gonna put some weird useless emoji at the end, but I couldn't decide on one.
For me, the earliest approval mark was the writing of 'ROTFL' or 'ROTFLMAO' if you felt it really deserved the effort to denote a funny post. Next came emoticons for me at least, all text based still, often with a nose:

This was the canonical root. Then came 'meh' and 'LOL' as well as emoticons without the nose which boards software came to replace with a graphic by default mostly:

I'm not sure where this latest trend of the graphics being printed on keyboard slides on phones and tablets came from first; was it them being included on virtual keyboards first, or did they wait until unicode included them in extended planes?