This is my first blog post for giffgaff. Once you have read my blog, please let me know what you think by replying at the bottom of this post. I will be talking about Instagram in this post. This blog includes what it is, how it is used, how it has changed people’s lives and how you can set up your own account.
Instagram is only a mobile app and has 100 million active users. It is a photo sharing social network where users can show what they are doing through a series of pictures. Once you take/upload a picture, you can apply a number of filters that makes your pictures stand out.
Before filter After filter
Pictures on Instagram come up as a square shape; similar to a Polaroid or Kodak Instamatic cameras. The shape of the picture certainly is different to the 16:9 aspect ratio used by almost all mobile cameras.
This is an example of a square shape This is the standard 16:9 ratio photo
Many celebrities have accounts from Justin Bieber to Stacy Solomon. You can tell which account is real by looking at the amount of followers the celebrity has and checking who they are following. Most of the time, they are following no-one or following a few fan pages.
If you can’t find a picture a celebrity has posted anywhere else, then you are most likely on the correct Instagram page. A lot of celebrities share their Instagram pictures on Twitter and Facebook, so that is another way of finding the official Instagram page of that celebrity.
As well as sharing pictures on Instagram, another well-known feature is the hashtag feature. The hashtag is used the same way as it is used on Twitter; you use the hashtag before you write a keyword, so if someone searches for the keyword, your tweet will appear - the same thing happens on Instagram. A popular hashtag on Instagram is the ‘#nofilter’ hashtag. This means the picture you have uploaded has no filters on it. If you click on that hashtag, you will see millions of other photos from users who have posted pictures with no filters.
There is a button called ‘explore’ which shows the most popular pictures at that time. Every time you refresh the page, there will be new pictures. After all, 40 million photos are uploaded every day on Instagram.
If you like a photo that been uploaded by a user, you can ‘follow’ them. Similar to Twitter, any new pictures from that user will be added on to your newsfeed. Once you ‘follow’ someone, it will appear on their ‘news’ section. They can either follow you back or view your photos – that’s if their profile is not on private. Your profile is automatically public to everyone unless you go to settings and change the option yourself.
Instagram has only been around since 2010, but has already had an influence in users’ lives:
One lucky Instagram user received a marketing job offer after the company recognised her.
However, there was some downside in December when Instagram announced that a change to its T&C’s meant that they can sell your photos for paid or sponsored promotions with no reason for them to compensate you.
Users made Instagram listen by removing their photos and some went and deleted their account altogether. A lot of celebrities joined users with their anger and told Instagram they would delete their account if the policy didn’t change. A day later, Instagram removed the rule to keep users happy.
More recently, Instagram have announced that they will now be supporting videos on Instagram. Have a look at this video to check it out. The best thing about the Instagram video feature is, you can pause the recording and start it again at any time. The video feature also has filters, so you can make your videos look as your pictures.
Want to get an account? If you have an iPhone (also available on iPod Touch and iPad) or android device running 2.2 or higher, go into the app store/ play store and get the Instagram app.
Once it is installed you need to make an account and profile. Your bio needs to be short and snappy. Mine just says ‘hi’ with a link to my Twitter at the moment. If you link your account to Facebook and Twitter, you can find your friends on there, as well as uploading your Instagram pictures on the two social sites.
You can see the buttons to share to multiple social networks. You can also tag people and add a location.
I love Instagram. I think it is great ways of letting your friends know what you have been up to in a creative way.