It’s not uncommon to see a photo being circulated on Facebook with a caption that reads something like, “1 like = 1 prayer, 1 share = 10 prayers.” Is this done with good intentions or is something else going on here?
In almost every case, these tactics are aimed solely at gaining likes on Facebook, using an emotionally-charged image as bait.
When you see a photo such as this, take a look at the source of the photo – the page which originally posted it. Often you’ll find that it’s a page with tens of thousands of likes, which is constantly asking for unrelated photos to be shared in order to build their audience. One of the photos we’ve shown below came from an Eminem fan page, which obviously has nothing to do with the photo. That same page had dozens of photos like this posted recently, but nothing was posted about Eminem at all. Pages like this are continuously fishing for likes and shares. While a “normal” page might post an off-topic photo that they feel is important, a page fishing for likes will encourage you to like or share a photo that is irrelevant to their topic, and they’ll do so repeatedly.
In the wake of the Newton, CT school shooting, dozens of pages cropped up within days – many of which immediately started sharing photos of the victims with the “1 like = 1 prayer” bait. Even when some commenters expressed discontent with this tactic, others actually defended the page owner. This shows to what extent the emotions generated by such images override good sense. If some of those defending the “1 like = 1 prayer” images would actually look at the page from which it originated, they’d find that these aren’t official pages by any means, and many of them are more about likes than any sort of true memorial.
These “like bait” photos come in many varieties, and we have included a few examples here. Sometimes it is a sick or maimed child, or perhaps an outrageous photo that sparks anger.
1 like = 1 prayer
1 like = 100 prayers
1 like = 1 punch
1 share = 10 pray
1 share = 1000 prayers
1 share = 1 kick + punch
Sometimes they’ll even try to guilt you into sharing with “Ur 1 prayer can save his life.” Really? If they truly believed this, they would ask you to pray instead of clicking “like” on a Facebook photo. We’ve also seen, “Share if you care.”
It’s ghoulish that these “like whores” will use any tragedy they can to promote their pages, and play on people’s sympathies in doing so.
If you want to pray for someone, pray for them. Clicking “like” on an image that is obviously aimed at building a page’s following won’t do the subject in the photo any good. Simply put: a like is just a like, and nothing more. And often these photos are of old events that have long since been resolved. Many of the photos of sick children are years old, which means prayers or support are no longer necessary.
“Likes” or “shares” do not equal a prayers or punches. They equal support for someone who has used an emotional image – and your reaction to it – to further their own Facebook page. Spreading such photos that are obviously meant to gain likes for an unrelated page makes you a pawn in this pathetic game.
It should also be mentioned that no one will donate money based on likes or shares either, but that’s the subject of a different article.
If someone you loved was involved in a tragedy, would you want an Eminem fan page to use photos of the event to gain likes?