I read and understand the philosophy behind not having retweets or likes here, and also not showing the same level of detail on following/followers. However, after a little over a week on micro.blog, I think it contributes somewhat to the feeling of shouting into a void.
A lightweight mechanism to say “I saw that and enjoyed it” provides some validation that you’re sharing things that this particular community connects with. Just as I’m not going to be able to come up with a unique and thoughtful written response to every nice photo or thoughtful post I see here, I can’t expect others to do the same for me. But in the absence of replies, I’m left wondering whether anyone saw it, or if they saw it and disliked it, or if they just didn’t have anything substantial enough to say to warrant an actual written reply.
Maybe I’m just too focused on external validation, and I do think that the Likes-driven culture of the other social networks can drive a ton of undesirable behaviors. But here, I feel like it’s completely possible that no one is reading what I post, or if they do it might just be a random drive-by and I’ll never hear from that person again. It doesn’t feel like I’m acclimating to the community, understanding the norms, and learning what kinds of interactions people do and don’t respond well to.
But maybe I just suck at microblogging and need to try harder.