Like it? But I Don’t Like It!

Finally, Tony and Rob disagree on a topic. And we like it!

Like or Dislike?

Are you one of those people that hits “Like” on a regular basis? Actually, it doesn’t matter if the button says “Like” or subscribe or list or add or… could you possibly be contributing to the dilution of photography’s impact? In today’s topic Tony, Rick, and Rob talk about the Like button and how we see it as being a problem for photography.

The questions we (try) to cover today are:

  • Are people just hitting the like button with out thinking?
  • How does this impact photographers?
  • Has it killed personal tastes?
  • How do we stop from falling into the trap of just hitting the like button?
  • Are there any upsides to this?
  • Is there anyway/need to solve the problems it causes?
  • Is it possible that, when we require standards, we can make art less accessible? Art needs to be accessible but where is the line between being available and just being inundated with 500 crappy pictures of a person’s vacation?
We get on a pretty good bent about whether we need to have people adhere to standards, should we go to smaller, more personal communities, or even look back about 10 years on the internet when Web Rings were all the rage? The one thing that becomes clear in this episode is that we don’t have an answer (just a bunch of opinions).

Please leave a comment on the post to let us know if you agree or disagree. Better yet, let us know what you think is a viable solution to the problem.


Today’s artist is Norman Lindsay.

Today’s photographer is Joe McNally. Oh, and here’s the link to the YouTube video of Joe that Rob refers to in the episode. This guy goes places that none of us three would ever dare! Well, maybe Rick.



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  1. Ivan January 18, 2012 at 11:43 pm #

    Personally, I don’t find the “like” button problematic. It serves a role in social networking which is distinct from photography merit badge. Many of my friends know my models, so a “like” often means “I’m glad you and the model got together to shoot!” Not that I don’t like to get compliments, of course.

    I guess I don’t quite see what the problem is. Is the problem that people who lack skill are entering the pro photography biz?

    Is it that we don’t advance because we wallow in the hollow praise of the “likers”?

  2. Rob January 19, 2012 at 4:57 pm #

    Great points, Ivan. For me (and I can’t speak for Tony or Rick) it’s that we don’t advance because we “wallow in the hollow praise of likes.”

    As for those who “lack skill”, the issue isn’t that they are entering the pro biz by their own volition, but rather they’re led down the garden path by well-meaning people who “like” their images. In this scenario, the like button is problematic. Or, more accurately, the cavalier use of it and the easy access to hollow praise are the problems.

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