Instagram started rolling out a minimalistic white interface this week to users. As usual we don't know rhyme or reason as to who's getting the updates first. As you can see in the screen caps my iPad Pro got the update while my iPhone 6 Plus has not. But as things go with social I just roll with it and continue to focus on creating content.
As someone who takes action daily to minimize my consumption I can appreciate the new interface that Instagram is using but I can't help but wonder if this new interface was inspired by VSCO on iOS. Another thought comes to mind - Is VSCO loosing their edge? I hope not but let me ask, when was the last time you posted to VSCO's built in feed?
What happened to the Expore tab?
While I appreciate that Instagram is rolling out updates to the look of the app what we lost over the last few weeks is more telling. We lost major functionality in the explore tab of IG.
I'm a proponent of natural interactions (I.E. no games, no bots) with socials and relied on the explore tab to find out what tags are trending on IG. While the trending tags didn't directly influence what I created content wise, it was important to know what the masses gravitate towards. Well those trending tags are gone which leads me to the next question - are hashtags over? I think so. Either that or IG is only allowing brands that pay for ads to see this info. Who knows.
Everytime Facebook/IG pushes an update out that reduces functionality to users I'm reminded of my view that Facebook/IG are the shopping malls of social media. I'll continue to reduce my time on both while looking for a social network I'm actually interested in and more importantly continue to slowly build out this site.
Social networks can change the rules without regard for their users and there's nothing we can do about it other than bitch and leave. Investing effort over time with our own website might have felt old school for a bit but no one can tell me what to do here.
If you're curious I'm running GiulioSciorio.com with Squarespace which I found to be a good fit for me after spending thousands on semi-custom Wordpress sites.
At the end of the day anything that introduces barriers to creating in my authentic voice has to go. The more Facebook/IG ramp up control the more I'm out. Maybe Ello and EyeEm are the next big platforms but in the meantime I'll be creating and sharing more here.