Week 8: Instagrammin’ It

The media community, as a whole, love to nark on about twitter and Facebook as a established news medium. It’s no secret. But what about instagram? Tonight as I was making dinner, my 17 year old brother walked in, sat at the table and banged his fist down – “it’s been 3 minutes and I’ve only had 36 likes! He cried”.

D was of course referring to his latest post on instagram featuring a photo of him running on the rugby field for his final ever school game. I asked whether he could live with himself with only 36 likes. He replied saying he’d probably delete it if it didn’t hit 100 likes within 15 minutes.

The first 5 minutes is crucial to instagram success you see.  It’s all about the likes, the instant gratification. So I asked D what instagram success looks like.

It looks a little like this –

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The more likes means you’re more popular which means girls will want to date you.

30 mins later and I click though a mammamia link (via twitter) about the same topic from a feminist perspective. It’s a pretty cracking read. What got me was this paragraph –

“But it’s the overt sexualisation in the way they portray themselves that disturbs me. Because it seems so totally fake and manufactured and inauthentic. And it troubles me that they perceive that’s all they have to offer boys – looking hot and sexy.”

I started thinking about what do our mainstream new media offer the world through instagram?

Not much it seems. Instagram is a totally visual medium, that earlier this year enabled video content to be uploaded from user’s content libraries. Instagram is a perfect match for television networks. And yet the only active accounts I could find were the ABC and 7 News Brisbane.

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The ABC in particular ran some awesomely concise federal election night coverage through it –

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To me, it’s a massive missed opportunity to push innovative and dynamic news coverage in front of social media users.

Let’s hope that can change.

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