Instagram – in the early days it promised so much, but with each photo posted the whole experience started to feel shallower and shallower. Every time I posted a comment or gave a Like it felt like a small part of me died inside. It didn’t matter how or on what I commented on, I always regretted it afterwards. I quit Facebook shortly after the U.K. voted to leave the E.U. because I couldn’t handle the trolls, the false information, the racism, and the overall background noise and now I feel the same about Instagram.
I’m not claiming that Instagram is on the same awful level as Facebook or Twitter (however Jaron Lanier and Cal Newport to some extent are) but it’s becoming clearer every day that it doesn’t care about photography, value-driven content or deeper engagement amongst users. It has become a platform of dopamine-fueled content providers (myself included) whose main goal is to rack up the most number of followers and Likes possible.
And for what? Think about it. Does it really increase the value and quality of your daily life? Does it encourage you to create content that is a true reflection of you and what you stand for? For me the answer is no. Like others I’ve been suckered into taking and posting photos that I thought would do well. I honestly can’t think of a single way in which the platform has made my life better. It’s only real achievement has been to suck away valuable time from my life and instill a completely ridiculous sense of envy when I see other posts (which are never ever the real story). I don’t blame the users though, it’s the way Instagram has been designed that should take responsibility. So because of everything mentioned above, as well as the increasing number of generic content, crap adds, and utter disgust I feel towards the parent company I’ve decided to stop using it. The links to my account have gone from this blog and my profile has been updated to direct people here. I’m tempted to delete the account completely but I know how I often make spur of the moment decisions and a friend says I should leave it as an archive, so for the time being that’s what I’ll do.
With a blog or website you have far more control over what you post and how you engage with other users, and being here more will force me to work harder on creating genuinely valuable content instead of trying to get that morning dopamine fix.
Thanks for reading.