Does Removing a Like or Down Voting Make Something Less Viral?

Posted 1 year ago by Tom Maiaroto.


The short answer. No! Believe it or not, once you say something on the internet, it's hard to take it back (completely). So don't go posting any pictures on Twitter that you wish you hadn't.

If you were to like something and then real quick unlike it and remove it from your timeline, you wouldn't have contributed to a page's virality. Because most likely you haven't spread the information. You also haven't taken away from its virality because you can't change what other people have done.

However, if you were to unlike a page hours or days later...You already had an affect on the page's virality. There is no way to know how many people clicked on that link from your timeline or Twitter status update. The owner of the site could look through their Google Analytics or something, but even still - we have no idea how many people e-mailed that URL to their friends, bookmarked it for later, shared it elsewhere and so on. No one knows that and no amount of wishing or tools will ever tell you that.

All we know is that you linked a page at some point in time and that action itself was spreading the information. If it was a live link on the internet for any real period of time (I'll say more than an hour) then there could have been many people clicking on it (depending on how many followers you have). Even people who don't follow you may have read your mesage from a search or feed somewhere. You just simply don't know and it's not something we can track.

So in all likliness, you made the page more viral just by liking it in the first place. It's a win win situation for the page. You literally can not lower how viral something is. No taksies backsies, sorry.

Same goes for down voting. Keep in mind people see your actions and if you down vote something or leave a negative comment, there will be the type of people who are curious. People will want to know why you down voted something or had something negative to say. You know the saying - "Even bad publicity is good publicity."

Don't confuse sentiment with virality. The observation of engagement and the spread of information is what makes something viral. Whether or not someone agrees with something has no bearing on its virality unless that person decides not to engage. Not to share. However, many people like sharing things they dislike. At which point, there's no way we even could be aware of that user. So, again, no taksies backsies on the internet.


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