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My insta-summer: how I learned to stop worrying and love Instagram

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13.01.2018

Until this summer, I had come to believe there were two kinds of people in this world: those who used the photo-sharing and micro-blogging website Instagram, and those who boycotted that cesspit of vanity and airbrushed reality.

In case it's not immediately obvious, I counted myself very firmly in the second camp.

It's true, I did open an Instagram account back in 2012 to see what all the fuss was about.

But, after posting a few lacklustre pictures from a Washington DC trip, I soon tired of the thing, realising my primary motivation was a not particularly altruistic desire to rub it in everyone's faces what a lovely time I was having. Not to mention what a well-travelled and cultured person I am.

I also harboured some deep concerns – in no particular order – about the displacement of work for my professional photographer colleagues, the wisdom of continually updating total strangers about one's immediate whereabouts, and the higher levels of jealousy, anxiety and depression among users.

Not for me the fake smiles, pert boobs and dazzling teeth of the Insta-generation, I concluded.

If a measure of a community is the calibre of its popularly elected leaders – and let us hope, for all our sakes, that it is not – what can we learn of Instagram?

Today, the........

© The Age