I want to tell a little story. Sit back and get ready for a ride.
Can the real Instagram addicts please stand up? I know you’re out there somewhere because Instagram doesn’t have five stars on the app store for nothing #dude. Well, I know you won’t because you probably don’t think you’re addicted. You only check it every so often because that stupid alarm notified you that someone liked your selfie, Starbucks, or whatever half naked picture you posted to your private account. Or you just use it for work like every hair stylist located in a two block radius. Or maybe you don’t use it that much which is a lie if you can recite someone’s username from memory. If you’re not willing to stand up, I’ll do it for you #noshade.
So, I was addicted to Instagram #instaawful. Pickthebrain.com says it only takes sixty-six days to start an addiction #oops. But as most people know an addiction is not something you plan on happening. I did not plan to post more than thirty pictures a day and buy followers #ohno. It was the fault of the popular page on Instagram which doesn’t exist anymore #funny. Well not really. I wanted to be seen, and I tried to gain popularity by any means. It sounds crazy, I know, but I was desperate. My story went like this #storytime.
I woke up in the midst of the night rolled over and grabbed my iPhone, typed in my passcode, and clicked on that brown camera icon (at the time it was brown. I’m telling a story about old Instagram.) My pink bedroom was lit up by my television still playing Cartoon Network. I was still tucked warmly in my bed, and my fan was still blasting air in my face. Instagram opened, and the orange tab at the bottom told me my likes for the evening. It was over twelve, but some stupid person went through and liked more than one of my posts. That frustrated me to the end of every earth #annoyed.
When I posted a picture, I wanted people to like the most recent post, not the ones I posted two hours ago. I opened another app I had especially for tags #tagsforlikes. I went and copied the tags that were most popular then I copied them to the comment section of my picture. I waited a few seconds before I refreshed the page. The orange tab at the bottom appeared again. +5 likes #awesome. The desperation for likes kept waking me up. I was anxious to see if anyone had doubled tapped their screen to give me attention, because of this I couldn’t rest.
I felt lively even though I had two hours of sleep. I got out of bed, got dressed and went downstairs. I blasted music into my ears then I opened safari then I began to pace. I still had pictures on my phone I could post from earlier, but they didn’t seem as grand now as they did five hours ago #bored. I needed something that would stand out. I typed in fashion because that was about the only pictures people would flock to. I wasn’t an #instamodel, nor was I someone trying to sell a product. I just wanted to hit the popular page once, but it was light years away. I couldn’t get past 300 likes.
I scrolled through and found a few pictures of wedding dresses and pieced together outfits that maybe came out of a magazine. I tried to avoid watermarks because they took away from the essence of the picture. I needed to post it before a certain time, or else I wouldn’t get past thirty likes. It was around three in the morning. People somewhere around this world were up and scrolling through their phones.
I posted the picture of a wedding dress worn by a petite Asian bride. The dress had a long train, and it also had a lovely design. The picture was blurry, but it was going to hold until I posted the next ten pictures.
My mind was running fast trying to figure out what tags to place at the bottom. #Fashion was not guaranteed to make users tap the screen twice. Actually any generic hashtag that would actually describe the picture would not get the picture liked; they were over used, and the picture would get lost in seconds under the rest of the pictures marked with the tag #awful.
Most people on Instagram during this time pretended not to use hashtags. They really made their 1000+ followers believe that every picture they post automatically got twenty likes no problem. Well, I saw straight through those people. Those people post hashtags then delete once the likes got to eleven #fake. It took me a while to realize this, but it could look very desperate if you have thirty hashtags at the bottom of the photo. I did care, but I didn’t because I changed them every five hours #instagood.
I continued to play music until I came up with ways to get more likes. I paced across my cold kitchen floor before I opened safari again, this time I typed in cool stuff. I wasn’t specific about what kind of cool stuff I wanted. The same photoshopped pictures came up along with the see-through iPhone that had yet to make an appearance. I choose to grab the picture of fruit shape juice boxes. They were cute and probably worth about 100 likes. I had to wait to post it because I had just posted the dress and that had just received 100+ likes #cool.
When five in the morning rolled around I posted the picture of the juice boxes. My eyes lids were heavy. I went to bed, pushing Instagram as far into the back of my mind as I could. I had slept until eight before I was up again checking my phone to see if I got more likes. My heart beat quickly as I typed in my code then opened Instagram. I went straight to my page and saw that the picture only received eighty-three likes #AHH.
The struggle I had to put up with to gain likes was not worth the two-second recognition that I might have gained. So yes, some people were making it to the popular page early that morning while people like me were still fighting to make our way to the top #thissucks. I opened the app again to see how many pictures I had posted within the past day. The people I followed did not have anything on my twelve pictures in a roll with about twelve more coming later that day. Embarrassed, I promised myself I wouldn’t post again until tomorrow.
I could have deleted the app, but how was I going to get instafamous? #never. I was going to have to post more and more until my followers went up. I had about 100+, but I spent five dollars to get 500+ ghosts to pretend to make me likable. This shallow happiness was the beginning of an entire new rabbit hole for my hunger for online attention.
I fought myself on whether or not to post; I knew that I gained a bit of a following. I had to post; otherwise, I was going to lose followers #crap. I went through my phone and posted more fashion pictures. I was going to save the wedding dresses until the morning; they got the most likes. I posted the second most popular hashtags because if you used the most popular tags too much, your picture wouldn’t get any likes. I refreshed the page; only got ten likes. It wasn’t a good time to put up anything else #darn.
I knew that I was reaching 1000 pictures on my page and that was sad considering I had only used Instagram for a few months. Frantically, I began to delete picture keeping only the ones with 100 or more likes. No one was going to notice that my picture went down; at least I hoped. They probably did because going from 700+ pictures to less than 500 is a huge difference. I worried about what it would do to my image, but other users were doing it also #followforfollow.
See doesn’t this sound like an addiction, I didn’t know. I was just working my butt off to get followers and likes. Most people I knew had a 1000+ followers, but they followed 1000+ people back. That was unnecessary to me. I just wanted the recognition that many people who have over 1,000,000 followers take for granted. @kimkardashian and her 80+ million followers(now 135+ million.) Hair flip because the only thing she has to do is post her lips and that’s 1,000,000 likes #dang. But I not jealous of her, because I quit Instagram. Honestly, that is how my story ends. I deleted Instagram after starting three different pages and downloading three different like apps and tags apps. I had a problem so no judgment #please, but at least I’m admitting to it.
Now I have the Instagram app again and barely use it. Funny huh? I like it that way. Likes are nice, but they are not the only thing in the world.