As the real money evaporates, we’re increasingly living in a world of digital currency. Bitcoin is worth more than gold now, and coming in a distant second is the Facebook like. You can buy a Tesla with Bitcoin, and with enough likes you can buy yourself a momentary respite from your crushing awareness that both you and the world you live in are teetering on the precipice of full collapse.
But, just as we value money we’ve truly earned more than money we steal from a beggar, not all likes are equally alike. A like for a good joke or picture of your cat is the gold standard. Any like you get from the following is worth about as much as a Venezuelan Bolívar:
1. Liberal Pandering
Now, we’re politically neutral here at Break.com—we have to be, otherwise we’d lose our tax-exempt status as the Church of LOLZ, lol! But topping this list—and really, this list could have just been ten variations on this—is liberal pandering. Do you think spraypainting swastikas on Jewish preschools is wrong? How about shrieking racial epithets inside the black Starbucks by the airport? Surely at the very least you could agree that we shouldn’t force the gay kids to wear identifying armbands, right? You’d have to be Literally Hitler to like, refuse to like these. Right?
2. Death anniversary
In the age of Facebook Reactions, this would more technically be described as “pandering for sad faces,” but even back before we had the option of clicking “haha” when someone’s dog needed an expensive operation, people were posting things like “it’s been six years since great aunt Helene left us. I still think about her every day.” No you don’t. You just know it’s the anniversary because you had to miss Super Bowl Sunday for the funeral that year and you’re still mad but you think maybe getting a couple likes out of this will have made the whole thing worth it. That’s no way to honor the memory of Aunt Helene. Bitch was KNOWN for hating pandering for likes.
3. Celebrating an achievement of someone you’re barely connected to
If your dad invents a drug that turns the AIDS virus into vitamin E, go ahead and bask in his reflected glory and treat yourself to a few likes, too. Did your conceal-carrying sister stop a spree shooter with a headshot from fifty yards? Hero! Take this L[ike]! Now, did someone you know and not really like at college win a People’s Choice Award? Did your barista beat cancer? That is their tale to tell. If you want to shine off someone else, keep it in the family.
4. “I am so blessed to have the greatest friends”
This is on par with saying “you look nice today”: it’s hollow, probably not true, AND elicits an automatic thank you (or like) out of polite obligation.
But it’s also kinda like saying it must be God who made you miss the flight that crashed: if our Lord above decided to save you then, by default, he also decided to send a youth soccer league and group of Fulbright scholars plummeting to their fiery deaths against a mountainside. If you have the greatest friends, and I don’t consider you a friend (you added me, pal), then, by default, my friends fall short of “the greatest.” I can’t believe you expect me to give you a like after you insulted my admittedly sub-par friends.
5. Straight-up asking for likes
To be fair, this deserves credit for being far and away the least manipulative and most transparent on the list. If someone were to just say to you, “Look, I know we both got haircuts this weekend, but only mine looks good, so compliment mine and let’s get on with our lives,” you’d have to respect that more than someone who says “nice haircut” the day after your barber sneezed while holding the clippers. Having said that, saying “like this if _____” or “I will _____ if this gets [#] likes” still belongs on the list.
6. Using the “said no one, ever” joke
This joke is funny and original every time someone uses it. Said no one, ever.