Instagram: A False Sense of Reality

6:48 PM

If you know me, you know I love social media. Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, Snapchat…you name it and I probably have it. Out of all of these platforms, I probably love Instagram the most. I love seeing artsy lattes on my feed, no matter how basic they are, or perfectly decorated desks and #ootd(s). I love all of that. I love when people’s accounts have themes where they most minimalism or use the same filter for each post. What I don’t love is how no one of it is real. Who’s really drinking a cup of coffee on white-pressed linens reading a magazine on a Sunday morning while wearing speckled socks? Not many people – instead we are lounging in bed, propped up with our computers, phones, and tablets wishing that our lives looked that the Instagram picture. But it’s not real. It’s not candid, but rather perfectly arranged to please the eye for someone’s finger to double-tap their phone screen and like the photo. While I admire these staged photos, they make me reflect on my own photos and how they’re not candid at all, not one bit.

         The One Time I Froze My Ass Off For a Picture
      Do you really think I slept in this onsie and then spontaneously ran outside into the snow? If you guessed no, you’re correct. I was sleeping in oversized sweatpants and a ratty concert t-shirt with bedhead (sorry to ruin your fantasy of me of wearing match bra and panties with a flawless face when I’m sleeping). When I woke up and saw the snow I didn’t think to myself “I’m going to go run and play in the snow!” I saw it as an opportunity. I put on makeup and my onsie, brushed my hair, and put on boots. I had my mom take over a hundred pictures of me prancing around in the snow, making snow angles and throwing snow into the air. None of this was real, it was just a strategy to get likes and followers

      The Perfectly-Clean Room
      As my roommate and you’ll tell you the harsh truth: my side of the room is only clean for a few hours. I typically can’t see the ground because I pulled all of my clothes out to try to put together an outside. My bed is never made (who wastes time doing that?). And my desk? Typically covered in paper, trash, makeup, and notes to myself. I cleaned my desk and made my bed for the sake of a picture. Yes, my room does look like this, at least the walls do, but with clothes scattered around my side of the room and homework and makeup spread out on the desk.
      The Happiest Place on Earth
      If you’re at Disneyland, you’re going to brag about it with a cute ‘gram. I went on the Teacups and didn’t really enjoy the ride because I was so busy posing for pictures. I did a fake giggle, smiled, and had a dozen pictures to show for it. Of course I was having fun at Disney, but this was posed for the sake of a picture.
      The Typical Tea and Book ‘Gram
      Remember what I was saying about people having perfect reading set ups? This is my attempt. I was bored one day and wanted to post on Instagram, so I found my cutest mug, made some black tea, pulled out a blanket I never use, and grabbed my favorite book. I wasn’t ever reading what I took the picture, and I hadn’t had a sip of tea yet. After the picture was taken I put away the evidence and drank my tea while I went back to my computer and browsed the Internet.
      Rainbow Road
     While in Seattle I came across rainbow crosswalks to celebrate all types of love. Instead of crossing the crosswalk like a normal person, I had my mom take a few pictures of me that were all posed. I smiled, spun, and fake-walked across the rainbow, and this is what I have to show for it. I remember being annoyed with my mom because I didn't like the photo either..

Fancy Food
You know what gets a lot of likes? Food. Specifically acai bowls from Malibu Farm. It's true that I spent a lot of money on this bowl of fruit, but to get more likes I added my friend's juice drink. I pushed everything back on the table so that the only things in the frame were the drink and my acai bowl. I didn't eat for two minutes while I took the picture. This isn't real, this is just a ploy to get likes.

I still love Instagram. I think it’s a great sharing platform, but people need to note that it’s not always the “truth.” Pictures are posed for, a candid laugh is never truly candid, and items are arranged to make an aesthetically-pleasing picture. The truth is. on the Internet or social media, nothing is real. Every tweet is made for likes, pictures are posted for hearts, and Snapchats are made to make people jealous. It’s a materialistic world out there, and you’re going to either play the game or quit.


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Current Book List

  • Pillow Thoughts
  • Milk & Honey
  • This Modern Love
  • The Perks of Being a Wallflower
  • Looking for Alaska
  • One Day
  • Me Before You


"Meeting you was like reading my favorite book for the first time."

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