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I suspect it is not the need to be “liked” necessarily, but a more general feeling of ego validation or reinforcement. I myself don’t use any social media like Twitter or Facebook, but I could anonymously scroll certain parts Reddit or HN, even without commenting, forever. Even without getting likes back, I think there is something to reading opinions that agree with you that is equally addicting.

As you mentioned at the end, I think the way to get out of it is to recognize the experience delivers no ultimate satisfaction. That’s how I got off of social media and how I constantly remind myself to close the HN tab.

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