Here's one: notice how a lot of people blatantly troll for likes and retweets on twitter? And notice how a lot of people fall for the trolling?
Is it possible that "validating" people on twitter in this manner will have damaging long-term psychological consequences for them? For instance, after getting, say, thousands of like across a period of time, what happens when they suddenly don't get any?
That's an interesting question. The people who have to blatantly troll for likes/clicks seem to already have some significant self-esteem issues driving their attention-whoring behaviour. There are already examples of very popular YouTubers who have openly talked about the large mental health toll that doing that kind of work inflicts on them. For the troll posters, I would think that they wouldn't cope with a sudden loss of attention very well at all. Might be likely to engage in increasingly desperate attention-seeking behaviour, like someone flailing their arms and gasping for air while drowning.