statistics

WHAT DOES A FACEBOOK LIKE MEAN?

Facebook. Our new lives. Our virtual social lives. A crucial platform to stay connected with friends and families and share similar opinions with people of similar tastes. Sadly, I dislike it. Not the opposite of what FB’s ‘like’ holds meaning. My dislike is entirely different. For me, FB is only a medium to bring visitors to my blog. Nothing more. Nothing less.

The growing FB likes that we see in our posts seem to give us different meanings than intended. For example, when I see people giving ‘likes’ to the post where I shared my blog-post, I question in their (‘likes’) authenticity. I ask myself, “Did they really like it?” Not that I would be stupid if someone condemns at my action for not appreciating the number of ‘likes’ that I got. What I mean is if they did they really love it! Did they really love the way I raised up the issue? Did they agree on my points? Did they think my writing adopted narcissism? Did they really take the time to read the entire post? Or are they fooling themselves in trying to make me see the positive ‘likes’ I have been getting in the post?

Please take note that ‘liking’ a shared article is entirely different than ‘liking’ few sentences of status. The statuses are short and hence their meanings are easily grasped. Moreover, the viewers can spare some time to analyze and appreciate their meanings. If they want, they will comment. Their ‘liking’ the post means that they are in sync with what the person has shared. It is also the case with ‘liking’ a photo. I cannot say about the video as some videos tend to be a bit longer than others and the first 20-30 seconds will be the key to someone ‘liking’ them. Else, they will scroll down their screens and give a damn to videos.

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“Ahh, oh!! The author busted our secret behind ‘false likes’!”

Blogs and other written articles, if shared in FB, require the users to click the link and read them. The administrator can know if his web traffic is authentic and matches with the number of visitors from FB’s website. In my case, over the course of over 87 articles, I have always found the discrepancy in the number of ‘likes’ that my followers left in the shared status and the number of visitors who actually visit my blog from the social media website. Most of the time, it affects my credential as the discrepancies psychologically persuade me to think that my writing failed short of its standard. That my writing did not fulfill its purpose.

Now, do not get me wrong if I sounded demanding from my viewers to compulsorily read the post. No, if you have not ‘liked’ my post, I expect nothing less. However, if you fall under the category that ‘liking’ the shared link will increase our relationships, then you are wrong. Whoever you are. Family. Friends. Teachers. Brothers. Sisters. This is not a symptom of a healthy reader-writer relationship. If you really value what I am doing, then give some time to read what I write. I care less about getting hundreds of ‘likes’ than about the constructive feedback that you guys give.

The discrepancy had been annoying me for the last couple of months. There was zero correlation between the standard of my writing and the number of ‘likes’ I averaged a post. Please, do not misuse the meaning of a ‘like’. Please do not ‘like’ simply because I am a member of your family. Please do not think that liking my post will cement our friendship. Please do not assume that your student will write a perfect article. Please do not idolize me as the blogger you want in the future to be. I am nowhere near perfection. If you really value our relationship, take time to read the entire post but, please do not ‘like’ my post and give me a false signal that you have indeed read it. I will appreciate if you scrolled down your newsfeed and go right past my post and not ‘like’ it in the process. Just be careful when you stop for a moment and just ‘like’ it. That is not the reason why I invest my time to write a blog post even when I have college assignments due next day.

I write because my stories may relate to yours. Now, we don’t want others to spoil our adventures by not appreciating them, do we?

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STATS: FOE IN DISGUISE?

I came up with this topic after Federer lost to Nadal in the semifinal of the Australian Open. That was because news circulated that the other finalist Stanislas Wawrinka had never won a set against Nadal in his previous twelve meetings. In the final, however, Nadal was beaten to allow Wawrinka get a hold of his first Grand Slam. Now, there were no mention of the statistics that had dominated the media prior to the final. I mean, is it fair to go along with the stats that appear in the screen and predict the outcome in the next meeting? 
Many a times this season in EPL, we have seen teams down the table beat the top four teams in their home ground and defied the statistics that swirled in the minds of the player when they entered the ground. Some records were more than fifty to a hundred years old. 
Statistics do rule a large part of our lives. We make most of our decisions from the details we confront in various situations. The exam results are largely based on statistics. We predict the best performers from the previous performances. So is the case in other disciplines like business, medicine and engineering.
Do numbers tell us the complete story?
Statistics have the upper hand in influencing the psychology of certain events. For example, doctors prescribe new medicines based on the success rates that those medicines had in a previous group of patients. The success rates force the doctors to believe on the medicine and hope that it won’t cause any negative consequences. 
On the other hand, some statistics compels us to calm down our senses whenever the same incident comes again. Talking about my supporting club Arsenal, it has never lost a match in which Koscielny and Mertesacker have played a full ninety minutes in the last two years. Now, every time I watch them play I have a spidey sense about the end result: win or draw. It is based completely on statistics. The bright side is that Arsenal fans tend to worry less about the end result!
It seems naive to get fooled by statistics. There is no concrete evidence to support our claim. Probability just cannot make the outcomes as it wishes. It is entirely a theoretical conviction set up by the mathematicians. Moreover, it neglects all the possible scenario that can affect an event. It may delineate an approximate value but the complete story is ambiguous. 
All we can ever do regarding the enigma of statistics is to cherish its richness. Although it fails to sparkle our conscience, its psyhological influence is appreciative. Sometimes it can be reliable and boost our confidence. Sometimes it acts as a betrayal to our friendship. Whatever the case, statistics will continue to baffle us and serve as a perfect example of a two-faced character: trustworthy or blood thirsty betrayal.