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Why I’m Leaving Instagram

ETA (08-13-2018): Upon going through my website, I realize that this is very old. I eventually went back to Instagram after they changed their TOS, and I'm no longer with Flickr after Yahoo sold them. Times change!

Sigh. This is not the post I wanted to write for today. I had all of these photos I took of a great hot pot meal I made this past weekend and was instead going to write about that. But then something really big happened in the internet universe and I felt like I had to put my two cents in.

I loved Instagram. It really changed the way that I interacted with friends, Twitter, and Tumblr. It was a place to put images relevant to what was happening NOW instead of taking gorgeous photos with my DSLR, waiting days to finally have time to get them off my camera, edit them, and put them on Flickr.

And for a long time, I really loved Flickr. It used to be my happy internet place. But then, a not-so-happy thing happened last year and I became really paranoid of the photos I put on Flickr. There were mean-spirited comments to the tune of “I hate when Flickr is full of shitty phone photos” and then there were people who were really exclusive about their cliques, and it was just anxiety-producing. That and I was constantly blocking perverts from looking at pictures of me wearing a sweater or pregnant. Ugh. It was too much, and Instagram was new and fun! So I decided to try that instead. In fact, I loved it so much I often said, “This is a service I would gladly pay for.”

Well, guess what? Now they are making me pay, but in a way that I'm not comfortable with. I have a public face (right here, on twitter, and a few other places) and I actually don't mind if photos of me or photos I take of the world get used for advertising, but, I'm protective of my kids. Instagram was a place I could put photos of my kids so my in-laws and other family and friends could see them and it felt mostly safe. Now it doesn't anymore.

So I'm going back to using Flickr full-time. I will be deleting all the old photos of my kids from Instagram and then just not using the service anymore. The new Flickr iPhone app finally gives Instagram a run for its money. It has great photo editing capabilities and filters AND I can control my privacy settings as I upload a new photo. That right there is key! Not only do I pay for Flickr but it provides me with a place to keep photos of my kids and public photos separate.

And yes, be warned, I mostly use my iPhone. My photos are in no way artistic but they are relevant to the time and space I inhabit. I may only upload DSLR photos every couple of months, so what you see if what you get. It's my policy to just try and be real, be in the moment, and enjoy life. My iPhone is a big part of that.

8 thoughts on “Why I’m Leaving Instagram”

  1. Well said. And I totally know what you’re talking about all-the-flickr-stuff (jerks, snobs and pervs sullying the happy fun time) so long as they make it easy to permission at the photo level and block unwanted interaction, I’ll keep paying to play. See you there!

  2. I feel the same way! And I am glad to go back to Flickr though I never really left just stopped using my DSLR as much like you… anyway, we met on Flickr, didn’t we? I just signed up on EyeEm and it looks very fun. Though the new Flickr app is pretty dang slick. Like you my iPhone is a part of my life… I just upgraded to the iPhone 5 so more phone photos for me! :)

    1. I think I’m done with 3rd party free photo services. I had high hopes for Instagram. It seemed to be part of the cool crowd that actually thought about what its users would want, but once it was bought by Facebook I had a feeling it was done for. The news is now that they’re back-pedaling and we were all reading their ToS “incorrect” which is a total load of hooey. They had a team of lawyers draft that thing so they could take full advantage of their users and only now are willing to capitulate once people are leaving. It’s backwards thinking, and I’m kind of sick of it. It’s why I barely use FB and I use twitter with full knowledge of what is public and what is not. I’m just drawing the line in the sand here.

  3. Yay Flickr!  I don’t mind your shitty phone photos one bit!  (And elitist Flickr snobs can bite me.  I’ve loved learning about photography and the communities I’ve been part of on Flickr have taught me a whole lot about taking better photos, but I also just like recording my life and interacting with people through images, even shitty phone pictures.)

    1. Thanks Whitney! I just need to make the time to go through Flickr once a day on the app or web. It’s hard to find the time. I even had a hard time remembering to go to the Instagram app and browse uploads! Time is something I need a lot more of.

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S. J. Pajonas