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It's been written that one of the reasons for Snapchat's success is the fact that they did not implement likes regarding photos. Some reasonably theories that likes inhibit the frequency of content creation by inducing mental friction in trying to determine whether content is post worthy or whether it will generate likes.

This behavior is also evident in users deleting content when it does not receive the enough social acknowledgment like the infamous Instagram (11 likes threshold.)

How are comments on content different than likes? Can the ability to receive comments lead to users into the same mental friction?

Imagine a link sharing app where the only variable feedback is the ability to see who saw your links vs. an app where link sharer can also receive comments on the links posted. Can the ability to receive comments decrease the number of links shared because the sharing process involves the user determining whether the link they're about to post will generate the reward (the comments)?

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    Generally adding the possibility to leave comments and/or likes increases user content creation. There will always be some people who quit because they didn't get the result they wanted, but many users will see it as a way to generate a reputation for themselves. A great example is Reddit where user engagement and user content creation is the main focus point of the website, and many people take their karma very seriously. I suppose this one depends on your user base. – Wanda Oct 30 '17 at 12:49
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"Likes" work well on a platform where there's a lot of users evaluating a lot of content quickly -- it's shorthand. Most of us have experienced posting things that generate few Likes, but I don't think it deters us from continuing with the platform. It might, however, shape what we post in the future. If nobody liked my painting, and everyone liked my beagle pictures, then I'd be more likely to post beagle pictures.

Comments can either attract or detract interaction based on the culture of the community and the rules of engagement. Supportive, nurturing communities that do not tolerate harassment and hate tend to attract people from many backgrounds and promote a feeling of safety. Communities that are poorly regulated can quickly devolve into a sewer of flamewars and garbage.

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