Talk is cheap. Supply far outweighs demand.
Social media is even cheaper.
For all the global connectivity made possible through tech, we mostly use it to put on airs and act real cool, but we’ve got to realize that we’re acting like fools. We’re keeping up with the Joneses and their conspicuous consumption—and it’s making us all miserable.
Look at my shiny new things!
Witness my amazing experiences!
Behold my incredible street taco dinner!
You know what? I’m all in favor of people being happy and sharing that happiness with the world—but we’re basically using social media to pimp our consumer highlight reels. Where’s the reality?
I noticed something that bothered me about how I use Instagram lately. I’ll pop in real quick to share something exciting or promotional (hey—I believe in what we’re doing here), but I only seem to spend more than a minute scrolling when I’ve got time to kill.
Sidebar: None of us has time to kill. O_o
When life is good—when it’s engaging, exciting, meaningful—or we’re selling something—we pop in real quick to show off that curated, life-is-good image. But we spend most of our time actually looking at what everyone else is up to during the mundane, tedium of everyday life, ya know?
That is, Instagram is basically “LOOK AT ME” when times are good, and reinforcement of how much our lives suck when we’re not spending money, when we’re stuck in a waiting room, watching TV, or sitting at a table with friends waiting for dinner?
GET OFF MY LAWN WITH YOUR LOUD MUSIC.
Social media used to be, you know, social. It was exciting. We were exploring the outer reaches of our networks and discovering common ground with new friends around the world. Today, it seems like we’re mostly sharing what we spend our time and money on in platforms operated by businesses specializing in hyper-targeted advertising.
It’s the antidote to all that polished, influencer bullshit. It’s pictures of the random, boring—sometimes gut-wrenchingly awful—situations we find ourselves in between gratuitous consumer purchase experiences.
It’s the shitty magazines at the doctor’s office, the random red light on the way to work, your feet in another room you wish they’d never been to in the first place, let alone AGAIN.
It’s reality. And I think it’s a good idea.
Sure, our navel-gazing corporate overlords will soon find a way to use this data against us, but what if, by sharing boring reality, we come to discover the outer reaches of our networks and discover common ground with new friends around the world?
Let me put it another way. Which would you rather see when you’re feeling like you want to escape from your boring, ho-hum life—all your “friends” having the time of their lives, or reassurance you’re not not the only one eating a frozen pizza on the couch while Frozen plays on the big, living room TV for the 42nd time this year?
It’s a thought anyway. And that’s why you might notice boring shit on my Instagram these days.