Not "liking" it

As Andy from Little Britain might say…”don’ like it”.

The like-that-I-don’t-like is the Facebook “Like” button. It’s fine and dandy in its natural habitat of, well, Facebook. It’s the best apathetic way to show people you care about something, with minimal effort. But when it’s used outside Facebook, by third parties, it’s not so snazzy.
I had followed a link to a page that was talking about the business uses of being able to place the Like button on external websites. It explained that when you click on the button on those websites, that action (e.g. “Jennie liked x page”) gets fed back and posted on your profile. There was also a Like button at the foot of the page, if you felt like trying it out. That was fine: the page was interesting, relevant, and I was happy enough for it to be posted in my news feed that I’d liked it, so I clicked the Like button at the foot of the page to test it.
Sure enough, it fed back to my profile, and that was fine. The original external website also showed who else in your Facebook friends group had liked that page, which was fine too, and interesting.
So, I forgot about having done that until a week or so ago, when I was tidying up my public profile, and removing any groups I’d joined or things I’d Liked that were no longer relevant, or I just didn’t care about. On Facebook, you can do this by going into your Profile, and clicking on the groups / interests area, which will take you to the page of any group you’ve joined. Once there, you can leave a group, or unlike the page you’d liked, and the information disappears from your profile. However, if you’ve used the like button on an external site, there’s no obvious way of getting rid of it. Clicking on the link to what you’d previously liked just takes you back to that page. I was stumped as to how to get the link to this (perfectly useful, professional) page off my profile. I didn’t need it gone (it’s not like it was anything controversial; it was actually professionally relevant), but I don’t like not being able to change things that I should.
In the end, some experimentation by Phil Bradley meant that he could help me out. It turns out that to NOT like something on an external site, you have to…erm…like it again. Somewhat counter intuitive, yes? So I pottered off and unliked something I did actually like, all in order to remove it from my public profile.
Anyway, that ramble was triggered by this “clickjacking” on Facebook, which means those hijacked by clicking a link are then posting on their own profile that they “liked” the site…I wonder if those clickjacked now also have a permanent link in the Likes on their Profile to the clickjack site. Because, to unlike it, you have to go and like it again…which would need the “Like” button to be visible to unlike it, which in this case seems to have been disguised as an “I am over 18” confirmation button.

Author: Jennie

Law, libraries, books, crafts, and general geekery.

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