I normally hold the same sorts of reservations for “Like’s”'s as @pasquinelli, but I think in a community with as little strife as this and a small enough user and active user count, the pros do outweigh the cons. I like the idea of telling a joke partially meant for one or two people and having them respond with one, other’s mileage may vary but since I like the idea of producing a response of exasperation in response to my “humour,” I have less inclination to feel self conscious about it. If the audience is laughing, it’s alright if it’s with me or at me or while simultaneously cursing my existence.
With a small amount of people with as diverse a set of tastes and personalities as we do see here, 1 or 2 Likes on something feels personal, 3-5 feels like you said something that resonated with people in a more broad sense, and something like 6-9+ Likes feels a Hot Post. Judging by the Video & Game Poll results for roughly 80 forum users who are active enough to check at least once in a while, and, idk, a number I’m pulling out of my arse for particularly active members of maybe 15-20, all of those end up feeling substantial in their own way. This ballpark of Like distribution on the IC forums outline one of my favourite things in games now that I think about it, the Small Numbers RPG. I do think about these sorts of things a lot, because there is a lot that’s interesting about the psychology of all of this, but there is something about how the numbers being small enough to make a rough mental calculation like what I did legible and comprehensible helps me put it into perspective like that.
I especially appreciate that we did all seem to realize that it is a useful way to encourage newer posters and make them feel welcome, by volume it absolutely must be but the introductions thread even by Likes per post is probably pretty high, which is great. It’s ritualized, but it feels sincere, you know?
In any case I think there are absolutely pitfalls to this sort of interaction system but I don’t know if it’s such a huge issue in an environment where the social climate is more personable, in the sense that even if we’re not necessarily intimate with one another, there’s very little superficiality ’round here.
Oh, as well, I just realized one of the worst pitfalls about formulaic interaction based systems that our forum does not have at all, which is that it doesn’t have any effect on the visibility of the post. One thing that makes me feel frustrated with stuff like that is that it’s recursive, Liked things are more Likely to be Liked because More Likes = More Visibility. We have adhered well to the old ways–a post is made more visible by an addition of content to it, only the recipient of a Like actually gets the site going out of its way to tell them about it, really. EDIT: I must have been skimming what @pasquinelli said somewhat because they mentioned this. Well, I think this is better for our purposes, I mean, it’s not like posts are going to have any sort of long term momentum anyway, with roughly 80 sort of active users and roughly 20 highly active users.