It's truly riveting how social media is such a sacred part of most members of Generation Z's identity. Whatever one posts, tweets, shares, follows, likes is, for some silently decided reason, viewed to be a monumental symbol and representation of one's character.
Why has social media become a personality trait?
The way we up-in-coming millennials manage our platforms and modify our posts to align with current trends and styles is a blatant invitation for our peers to judge and criticize. We spend so much time taking photographs, editing them for color hue and clarity, brainstorming captions, calculating an optimal posting time, only to publish a picture censored and conformed to media trends which only purpose is to give the publisher some form of gratification through hollow likes, comments, and follows.
Our social media profiles are cauldrons of negativity. The pressures of social media rob us of in-the-moment life experiences. At a concert, more people are recording videos for their Snapchat and Instagram stories than actually indulging in the music. Skiing or going on a hike is no longer an innocent put-down-the-electronics-and-go-outside activity; rare is it that you see a snowboarder without a GoPro mounted on their head like a cyclops. Even outings as simple as apple picking, going out to dinner, walking on a beachside, will never be fully enjoyed without the aghast and constant stress of capturing that perfect photograph at Golden Hour.
From my perspective, people post because they feel that if they are not posting their experience than it didn't happen.
For example, if you don't post a video of all your friends surrounding a dinner table at the most popular restaurant in town on Snapchat, it might as well have never happened. If you didn't tweet that humorous observance you made that day, you might as well have never thought of it. But it doesn't stop there because if you end up posting that video of your dinner or tweeting that humorous thought but received a little amount of attention, likes, comments, or shares, it was, for some unknown reason, STILL a total waste of time. What is the gain from measuring the value of thoughts and experiences through instant gratification?
#MakeInstagramCasualAgain is a trending joke referencing to restoring Instagram to its original 2010 state. Why don't we post memes anymore? Why are true candid, casual photos unpopular? This hysteria cycle is created and reinforced by one another. Let's transform our personal Instagrams back to the way they were 10 years ago. Let's stop the crazy editing, over obsessive captioning, and measuring of likes, follows, and comments. Who are we trying to impress?
Stop conforming your account to the way our skewed generation silently decided what was "cool" and "appropriate" to share with the world. Take a weird candid picture with your friends and publish it with no cheesy caption, post a picture of your dog if you want to post a picture of your dog, mom made a good dinner? Post it! Please, don't think I'm cruel for admitting these thoughts. I'm not mean, I'm just part of it, like (almost) every member of Generation Z reading this article. We have brainwashed each other into thinking this way when we log onto our accounts. This article may be dramatic but seriously, challenge and change the algorithm.