discussing online interaction & networking from the corner table...

Instagram & Community

I posted earlier on what makes Instagram a great platform. Today, more thoughts on why sharing photos and interacting over “my POV” is important to me.

With more than 13 million people on Instagram, you can see some fantastic sharing. It is innately personal and wonderful.
via How Instagram Restored My Faith in Social Networking | Geoff Livingstons Blog.

Most folks I’ve shared with on Instagram would probably say the same thing: “innately personal and wonderful”. Having a space for posting photos on a whim, just whipping out your iPhone (or soon, Android device) to snap a shot, to capture a moment, to post a caption – it’s fun and it’s addicting.

And the community aspect of Instagram can’t be emphasized enough. There are folks with great pictures, with great insights, with great communication skills – and then there are the rest of us, and all of us are able to interact on Instagram.

My habit:

  • Tap Instagram on my iPhone, prominent spot on first homescreen.
  • Scroll quickly through my Feed – these will be the pictures in the last hour or so from the folks I follow. I don’t go back and catch up on everyone/every picture I missed, but I do scroll through the queue at least once, maybe hitting the “Load more photos…” selection if the mood hits.
  • I double-tap each photo to LIKE. This action is important – at the very least it acknowledges the other person’s work. At most, it’s a real plus to have someone notice and appreciate what we’ve been doing with what’s essentially free time. I might have to skip a picture or two for my own sensibilities, but generally speaking I follow some great people, some great iphoneography artists.
  • At least three or four will really make me slow down as I scroll through the screen. I’ll leave COMMENTS – again, these are important. It’s reaching out and intentionally touching. And that’s where the conversations kick up.
  • After my Feed, I’ll head to the News tab where I’ll be able to see who’s been liking and commenting on my pictures as well. I’ll meet new folks, or maybe see someone who’s been off awhile – and I’ll click through to their streams and catch up a bit.
  • And that’s it – maybe repeat, starting back at the Feed tab. Maybe a quick perusal of the Popular page. Maybe post one of my own from the day.

I don’t get involved in most of the drama (folks stealing pics, some posting inappropriate stuff, others getting mad and building coalition forces against pic-stealers and inappropriate posters, etc). Instead, I just cycle through as storied above, taking time to see the world in a little iPhone-sized square through someone else’s lens. That’s that magic of Instagram for me – for that moment, I see what you see the way you’ve chosen to show it.

Are you on Instagram? Follow me – rickcaffeinated – or click through to INK361.com to see my pics there as well.

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