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Instagram: Beware of The Toxic Culture Behind It

The photo app is making us depressed, lonely and miserable. Why can’t we stop scrolling through the illusion?


Who would’ve thought that the simple use of photography could again revolutionize the world? After all, it was a long time ago since Kodak — once a very powerful company — branded our ‘moments’ with the introduction of the compact camera. Instagram has revived and re-awakened the phenomenon radically changing the landscape of digital-sharing photography embedding it in our collective consciousness. But, how does the app affect the way we see ourselves? And, what negative consequences will the promotion of a perfect lifestyle bring to our mental health?

Undoubtedly, photography has seen a new light on Instagram, its use has been democratized and modernized. Nowadays, anyone with a smartphone can access and enjoy the antics of taking a picture and putting it online for the world to see, consume, and judge. It’s difficult not to encounter someone who hasn’t given in yet to the temptation. Since its creation, the platform has amassed over 1 billion users with 100 million photos pictures and videos being shared daily — as of this writing.

Instagram has dramatically changed the way we socialize through photography. The new norm is to get and gain attention and validation — mostly from complete strangers — in the form of likes.

The image-based app has become the must-have app for everyone — mostly young individuals. Unlike other social media platforms, Instagram provides a more powerful value: images. A very profitable business too, by this year, it’s said the app ad revenue could reach over $10bn.

Though for teenagers and young adults the app is can be quite dangerous since they are still trying to find themselves in the world. Furthermore, apps like Instagram exacerbate feelings of attention and validation in the form of unlimited scrolling and innocent tapping — almost harmless — heart-shaped likes.

A growing body of evidence suggests that the outgrowing use of social media is linked to increased rates of anxiety



Orge Castellano

Journalist and multilingual researcher at your service. More stories on