What Exactly Does Liking a Tweet Do on Twitter?

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Written By likesgeek45

Engaging on Twitter comes in various flavors, with the newest kid on the block being the like. While Facebook likes rule the social realm. Twitter has embraced change by transforming its Favorite button into a more relatable Like button. This shift aligns with how people naturally wield this feature.

Now, let’s explore the diverse world of Twitter engagement before circling back to the intriguing realm of likes and how you can make them work for you.

Tweet Likes

Once dubbed favorites, buy likes twitter stand out as the most straightforward yet formerly enigmatic form of engagement. On their own, they might not seem like game-changers.

Each tweet boasts a like counter, displaying the number of admirers it has garnered. In a departure from Facebook norms, Twitter likes keep the admirers’ identities shrouded in mystery, opting not to disclose a list of enthusiasts.

However, when you extend a like to a tweet, it performs a couple of nifty tricks. Firstly, the liked tweet finds its place in your personal roster of likes. 

Surprised? Yes, indeed! If you log into Twitter and navigate to your profile, you’ll spot a lineup of “tabs” at the summit. These include Tweets, Following, Followers, and the treasure trove of your appreciated content – Likes.

Your Twitter experience begins with the default tab, which is Tweets. This tab has sub-tabs: Tweets, Tweets & Replies, and Photos & Videos.

  • Tweets: Your main feed, showcasing all your public posts, filtered for a clean view.
  • Tweets & Replies: A less filtered version, including replies to others.
  • Photos & Videos: Specifically displays images and videos you’ve tweeted.

Switch to the Likes tab, and you’ll find a reverse-ordered feed of tweets you’ve liked. This ties into various ways people use likes, a topic we’ll delve into shortly.

Remember, when you like a tweet or retweet, the original poster gets notified. Liking a retweet informs the person who retweeted it, as you’re essentially endorsing their share, not just the original tweet.

Buzzfeed, surprisingly, dug into the psychology of favoriting tweets. They termed it “one of the most complex and cryptic forms of online communication,” quite a claim for a simple thumbs up.

Stay tuned for our upcoming discussion on why people use likes and the diverse ways they leverage this feature. And that’s the gist!

Reasons People Like Tweets (And Why You Should Too)

Referring to Buzzfeed’s study, they found likes, formerly favorites, to be quite mystifying. People employ likes in diverse ways. Some are sparing, taking the term “favorite” seriously, while others, influenced by Facebook norms, see them as a casual equivalent to likes.

Now, as likes have gained popularity, let’s explore their various uses:

1. Bookmarking Tweets:

  • Your liked tweets serve as a personal archive. Think of it as a curated list of entertaining or useful content to revisit anytime. Some use it to relive memories, refer to specific posts later, or simply have a handy reference. Personally, I utilize it as a convenient way to “bookmark” insightful guides for future use.

2. Expressing Appreciation:

  • The purest form of a like is expressing straightforward appreciation. When you like a tweet, it’s a direct statement saying, “I liked this post.” Simple and genuine, some users employ Twitter literally, acknowledging content they enjoy. Interestingly, these might be the same individuals who adapted seamlessly when the term changed from “favorite” to “like,” even though the functionality remained unchanged.

Likes on Twitter are more than a mere button click—they encapsulate individual preferences and purposes. Stay tuned for more insights on navigating the


3: Acknowledging Engagement

Acknowledgment, in essence, is a step beyond expressing appreciation, more akin to stating, “I saw this post.” It serves as a subtle form of interaction, often employed in one-way messaging scenarios.

For instance, someone @mentions you, and by liking it, you acknowledge seeing it without necessarily posting it to your feed. It’s a simple way to signal awareness without diving into a more extended conversation.

4: Automated Support

Brands often employ automated support, utilizing bots to monitor specific hashtags, keywords, or Twitter search results for new content.

When relevant content surfaces, these bots automatically like the post. While sometimes the engagement goes beyond a mere like, it essentially operates as an automated process to show support and recognition.

5: Seeking Connections

Some users use likes as a way to subtly seek attention – a virtual “notice me” gesture. By liking a post, they hope the account owner will explore their profile. While the ideal outcome is a mutual follow, it’s seldom achieved. More often than not, the liker gains nothing, and the likee simply acknowledges the like and moves forward.


6: Passive-Aggressive Hate Likes

Surprisingly, there’s a peculiar behavior on social media—Passive-Aggressive Hate Likes. When someone is upset with another person, they express their discontent by liking all the posts of the other party.

It’s a subtle way of saying, “I could say something negative, but I won’t.” Even the iconic Carrie Fisher engages in this, liking and retweeting insulting posts to sass the poster without acknowledging the impact.

7: Non-Verbal Communication

Twitter has its fair share of “shy” users who observe but seldom contribute. These users follow others, monitor feeds, but refrain from posting or replying. Some feel they have nothing to add, while others believe they aren’t “allowed” to join conversations with elites or celebrities. For them, the only action is to hit the like button.

8: Flagging for Future Theft

Unfortunately, a shady practice occurs where users like popular content with the intention of later theft. They save the content and, weeks or months later, repost it unchanged, claiming it as their own. Disturbingly, there’s little enforcement against this subtle plagiarism.

9: Personal Engagement

Sometimes, a user likes your post without retweeting it because, although they appreciate the content, they feel it doesn’t align with their own content strategy. They refrain from sharing it with their audience to avoid potential loss but still want to acknowledge the tweet.

10: Affection Expression

Expressing affection digitally takes an interesting form—Affection Expression. When someone likes you, they keep a close eye on your posts. People consistently like anything shared by friends, family, or crushes, regardless of content. It’s a way to show support, seek attention, or simply feel connected.

11: Set a Reminder. Ever come across an intriguing post but don’t have time to dive into it? Instead of risking losing the link forever, many opt to like the post. Later, they revisit their liked posts to catch up on the saved links. Remember, you can easily un-like a post with no notifications.

12: Supportive Connections. 

Similar to the Twitter crush concept, this involves fostering a mutually supportive relationship among friends. Personally, I support my business-owner friends by liking their posts, encouraging others to join in. It’s a simple way to help them gain visibility.

13: Spontaneous Likes.

 Some people engage with posts randomly, not entirely sure why. This category includes those browsing under the influence who may not have full control over their actions. It’s a diverse group that adds a whimsical element to social media.

14: Brand Reputation Showcase. 

Some brands like every positive testimonial they receive, creating a feed of all the positive press. This aggregated feed becomes a valuable resource for marketing and serves as social proof.

Other Functionality

Twitter has undergone significant transformations, particularly in the fourth quarter of 2015. Let’s swiftly dive into the latest insights on retweets, mentions, and DM’s.

Recap 1/4: Tweet Retweets

On Twitter, the act of retweeting involves hitting the dedicated retweet button located at the bottom of a post. Once you retweet a tweet, the original poster receives a notification, and the tweet is shared with your followers and displayed on your feed.

It appears as the original poster’s information, with a subtle green “you retweeted” at the top, where “you” refers to your username.

Some individuals are hesitant about this type of retweet, as it broadcasts someone else’s profile information to their own followers. However, in reality, this isn’t necessarily a negative thing.

Constantly having a feed that’s all about “me me me” can be off-putting to followers. Similarly, feeds flooded with memes might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but that’s a different story.

When you hit the retweet button, you’re given the chance to include a message. If you choose to do so, that message, authored by you, appears on your feed. The retweeted tweet appears below it, slightly indented, in a condensed format.

This approach offers an improved version of retweeting, enabling you to support others without overshadowing your own presence.

Recap 2/4: Tweet Manual Retweets

In recent times, manual retweets have taken a back seat among some users. Unlike the convenient retweet functionality provided by Twitter, a manual retweet involves the old-school method of copying and pasting the original tweet.

You essentially duplicate the message, enclose it in quotes, and slap an RT: in front. If you have room, you can even throw in your own commentary or hashtags.

The decline in the popularity of manual retweets can be attributed to Twitter’s introduction of the two-form retweet button.

This new feature allows users to add their comments in full length, as opposed to the limited characters available in a manual RT. Consequently, the manual retweet lost much of its appeal.

One downside to manual retweets is that they don’t notify the original poster unless you @mention them alongside.

While many still go for the traditional RT @username “original tweet here” (added message), an increasing number of users are leaning towards the retweet button. It offers both simplicity and space, making it the preferred choice for many.

Recap 3/4: Twitter Mentions

A mention occurs when you include someone’s username in your tweet, indicated by the @ symbol. This triggers a notification for the user, allowing you to capture their attention and engage with them directly, all without resorting to direct messages.

This form of engagement presents itself in two ways: “private” and public. I use quotes for “private” because it’s not entirely confidential like a direct message; instead, it’s concealed from your public feed.

However, users can still access it by clicking on the “tweets & replies” tab or following the conversation in your feed or that of the mentioned user.

The sole distinction between a public and private mention lies in whether the tweet commences with the @ symbol. If it does – meaning the very first character is @ followed by a username – the tweet is categorized as a reply.

Replies can be directed towards specific tweets or users in general. To view these comments, users can click on the tweet and expand it to reveal the replies.

Public mentions simply position the @mention in a different context. If you’re responding to someone and prefer the reply to be public, the widely accepted practice is to insert a period before the @ symbol.

A tweet starting with .@username might be considered a reply, appearing in that tweet’s feed, while also displaying in your audience’s feed, akin to any other post you create.

Recap 4/4: Twitter Direct Messages

Direct messages on Twitter break all the rules. They are private, one-to-one messages sent through the Twitter platform, going from one account directly to another. Unlike tweets, they operate differently, featuring a notably higher character limit as of a recent update.

Direct messages are commonly utilized for private communication and as a means of offering direct customer support in a private setting.

There isn’t much complexity to direct messages. If you’ve ever used email or participated in any web forums with user accounts, you’re already acquainted with the concept. Alternatively, if you’re new to the idea, picture it as similar to Facebook messages but without the live chat interface.

How Do You Use Likes?

After this update, do you treat them the same as favorites, or are you liking more tweets than before? Let us know in the comments below!

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