Have you seen a bunch of your Facebook friends simply posting a heart emoji as their status and have no clue what it means?

It's pretty simple...and also really pointless (like a lot of things on social media.)

heart emoji status
heart emoji status (Laurie Cataldo)

The idea is that you'll post it, and inevitably someone will ask you what it means, and so you'll message them some form of this:

This is only for women, because this is Breast Cancer Research Week. One small act of solidarity between women."

This is annoying for many reasons. It's basically combining slacktivism AND vaguebooking all at once, and for no reason at all.

First things first, "Breast Cancer Research Week" is not a thing.

There's Breast Cancer Awareness month, and a separate, generic Cancer Research month, but that's it.

Next, if you want to raise awareness of something, be it a disease or otherwise, it helps if people actually realize that you're doing it. 80% of people will scroll past your heart emoji and simply think you're feeling especially lovey-dovey today. If you want people to be aware of the ravages of breast cancer, you should probably mention the words "breast" and "cancer" somewhere in the mix.

Finally, posting a heart to raise awareness doesn't actually do anything but make you feel like you've helped. You many not be able to donate a lot of time or money, but maybe instead of posting a heart emoji, you could post a link directing people to local cancer charities?

Don't know any local cancer charities here at the Jersey Shore? It's okay, I can help.

And of course, if you wanted to support a larger charity, you could consider fundraising for this year's American Cancer Society Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk.

Breast health is too important to turn into some useless Facebook gimmick!

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