It’s time for me to say goodbye to Instagram. The little photo-based social network that started out as cute and innocent has been turned cynical and ugly by its new owners. Who can blame the people at Facebook, though, for trying their hardest to exploit the weird little start-up after they dumped a billion dollars on the thing. A BILLION. With a ‘B’. For a silly little smartphone app that turns our boring, flat smartphone photos into hipster visual post-it notes.
I’m the first to admit that I was an early and enthusiastic Instagrammer. I took many photos of my dog, my breakfast, my lunch, my dinner, my snacks, my drinks, clouds, etc., during my Instagramming days. I also followed a handful of users who were stunningly creative. I enjoyed seeing their surroundings during the walk from the subway to their office (because they lived in hipster heavens like Brooklyn).
Things went downhill in Instagramville pretty quickly. They started fighting with Twitter (no more seamless integration), mucking with filter designs (then changing them back), attracting spam (sadly inevitable), and finally ticked off just about everyone with one of the most audacious retroactive rights-grabbing terms of service (TOS) contract ever. Even though they quickly back peddled on the TOS, the romance is over.
Perhaps it was always just a trend that would inevitably play out, but I really think Facebook’s moronic and ham-fisted handling of their latest billion dollar prize did more damage than time and trends ever could.
So, I’m saying so long to Instagram. Before that, let’s have a look at some Instagram memories from assignments at work, weekends, vacations and just tooling around the house. It was warm and fuzzy. But looking at them on a large computer monitor…it seems mostly fuzzy.