Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Instagram, Relational Aesthetics, and Facebook

I've been a regular Instagram user for about a year or so now. For me, the app is not so much about photography, but more about Social Practice or Relational Aesthetics. Though, I must confess that seeing world through a square frame touches my special spot. Yesterday, it was announced that Facebook would be buying Instagram for a billion dollars. This created quite a stir among the IG community with posts galore on the topic, which basically could be distilled down to, "Fuck, I guess we'll have to find something different now!" It all seemed (and still seems) a bit dramatic, but who knows, perhaps Facebook will shut it down when it's all said and done. I hope not.

In an article on the Atlantic's website, Chris Tackett reports about IG founder Kevin Systrom's idea of the app being used for "tuning into any place on Earth." He writes:
When Systrom asks us to imagine tuning into anywhere on Earth, I think of looking up Yosemite park to see if there's snow on the ground today. Or Madison Square Garden to check out all the concert and basketball photos that have been shared. I imagine using Instagram to look up a restaurant I'm going to visit to see what food photos have been shared from that location in the past few days. Maybe I'll be tempted to order something different because it looks so good. Rather than relying on what the official handlers of these locations' social media accounts want to share, I'd be able to tune in to the users' experience of them -- to see the most recent visual media from those locations at this very moment, as shared by people who are motivated by little else save the act of sharing itself.
I think that pretty much hits it, but I'm also curious to see what photo sharing on a mass scale will look in another year or two and how users of IG, or IG-like apps will push the boundaries beyond what their developers intended.

Until then, we will always have memes...

No comments:

Post a Comment