Instagram

instagram-logoInstagram is an online mobile photo-sharing, video-sharing, and social networking service that enables its users to take pictures and videos, and share them either publicly or privately on the app, as well as through a variety of other social networking platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and Flickr. People can upload photos or videos to Instagram and share them with their followers or with a select group of friends. They can also view, comment and like posts shared by their friends on Instagram. Originally, a distinctive feature was that it confined photos to a square shape, similar to Kodak Instamatic and Polaroid images, in contrast to the 4:3 aspect ratio typically used by mobile device cameras. In August 2015, version 7.5 was released, allowing users to post photos captured in any aspect ratio. Users can also apply digital filters to their images.

Instagram was created by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, and launched in October 2010 and acquired by Facebook in April 2012 for approximately one billion dollars in cash and stock. By December 2010, Instagram had 1 million registered users. In June 2011, Instagram announced it had 5 million users, and it passed 10 million in September of the same year. In April 2012, it was announced that over 30 million accounts were set up on Instagram. In December 2014, Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom announced that Instagram has 300 million users accessing the site per month. Instagram announced that 100 million photographs had been uploaded to its service as of July 2011. This total reached 150 million in August 2011. By May 2012, 58 photographs were being uploaded and a new user was being gained each second. The total number of photographs uploaded had exceeded one billion.

While Instagram has a neutral gender-bias format, 68% of Instagram users are female while 32% are male. Instagram’s geographical use is shown to favor urban areas as 17% of US adults who live in urban areas use Instagram while only 11% of adults in suburban and rural areas do so. While Instagram may appear to be one of the most widely used sites for photo sharing, only 7% of daily photo uploads, among the top four photo-sharing platforms, come from Instagram. Instagram has been proven to attract the younger generation with 90% of the 150 million users under the age of 35. From June 2012 to June 2013, Instagram approximately doubled their number of users.

There are many features and tools that come with Instagram. Users can upload photographs and short videos, follow other users’ feeds and geotag images with longitude and latitude coordinates, or the name of a location.

The new explore tab was introduced in mid-2012 in which 21 photos are featured when a user clicks the tab second from the left on the bottom bar of the Instagram app. The photos must be of a public user whose profile is not set to private. This section of Instagram is where users can search for specific users or particular hashtags that interest them.

Instagram offers a number of photographic filters that users can apply to their images. The filters are:

  • Normal: No filter applied
  • 1977: The increased exposure with a red tint gives the photograph a rosy, brighter, faded look.
  • Amaro: Adds light to an image, with the focus on the center.
  • Brannan: Increases contrast and exposure and adds a metallic tint.
  • Earlybird: Gives photographs an older look with a sepia tint and warm temperature.
  • Hefe: Hight contrast and saturation, with a similar effect to Lo-Fi but not quite as dramatic.
  • Hudson: Creates an “icy” illusion with heightened shadows, cool tint and dodged center.
  • Inkwell: Direct shift to black and white – no extra editing.
  • Kelvin: Increases saturation and temperature to give it a radiant “glow”.
  • Lo-fi: Enriches color and adds strong shadows through the use of saturation and “warming” the temperature.
  • Mayfair: Applies a warm pink tone, subtle igniting to brighten the photograph center and a thin black border
  • Nashville: Warms the temperature, lowers contrast and increases exposure to give a light “pink” tint – making it feel “nostalgic”.
  • Rise: Adds a “glow” to the image, with softer lighting of the subject.
  • Sierra: Gives a faded, softer look.
  • Sutro: Burns photo edges, increases highlights and shadows dramatically with a focus on purple and brown colors.
  • Toaster: Ages the image by “burning” the center and adds a dramatic vignette.
  • Valencia: Fades the image by increasing exposure and warming the colors, to give it an antique feel
  • Walden: Increases exposure and adds a yellow tint.
  • Willow: A monochromatic filter with subtle purple tones and a translucent white border.
  • X-Pro II: Increases color vibrance with a golden tint, high contrast and slight vignette added to the edges.
  • Slumber: Desaturates the image as well as adds haze for a retro, dreamy look – with an emphasis on blacks and blues.
  • Cream: Adds a creamy look that both warms and cools the image.
  • Ludwig: A slight hint of desaturation that also enhances light.
  • Aden: This filter gives a blue/green natural look.
  • Perpetua: Adding a pastel look, this filter is ideal for portraits

Another feature, the Lux effect, allows you to quickly adjust the exposure and contrast through a simple 100-point slider. This editing tool allows you to control the brightness to the saturation levels of each photograph.

Initially a purely photo-sharing service, Instagram incorporated video sharing in June 2013, allowing its users to record and share videos lasting for up to 15 seconds. The addition was seen by some in the technology media as Facebook’s attempt at competing with Twitter’s Vine video-sharing application. In the early quarter of 2016, Instagram increased the 15 seconds limit on videos to 60 seconds.

On December 12, 2013 at the press event in New York, Instagram founder Kevin Systrom announced the introduction of private photo and video sharing feature called Instagram Direct. In September 2015, Instagram Direct received a major update, adding new features such as instant messaging, adding more than one user & sharing more than one photos in a single conversation, and sharing post & profiles from feeds directly to the user.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Do you have an Instagram account?
  2. If so, what kind of pictures do you post? Examples: cat pictures, selfies, inspirational quotes
  3. Were you shocked that more Instagram users are female than male?
  4. Do you have a favorite filter to use on pictures?
  5. What is your favorite feature or tool to use on Instagram?
  6. Do you have any favorite famous people that you follow on Instagram?
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48 thoughts on “Instagram”

  1. Do you have an Instagram account?
    -Yes
    If so, what kind of pictures do you post? Examples: cat pictures, selfies, inspirational quotes
    -I post photos of my friends, dog, scenery, or events I attend.
    Were you shocked that more Instagram users are female than male?
    -Not really, I think a lot of girls are more likely to post photos of anything and everything and the guys I follow tend to just post artsy pictures. I guess I know more girls who frequent the app.
    Do you have a favorite filter to use on pictures?
    – I like Nashville and Valencia.
    What is your favorite feature or tool to use on Instagram?
    – I like that you can add location and Its fun to click on them to see where my friend took that awesome picture or ate that super delicious looking ice-cream cone.
    Do you have any favorite famous people that you follow on Instagram?
    – Does Miranda Sings count as famous person?

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    1. I’ve never thought about it, but guy users really do tend to post more artsy photos. Most of them are outdoorsy and adventurous.

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    2. I use the Nashville filter a lot too! It’s probably my go to. I also like the location app. It makes it easier to know where your friends have visited, like you said.

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    3. I love the location feature as well! It may be pretentious, but I like to go back on the photo map on my profile and see all the different places I’ve taken photos.

      Like

  2. Do you have an Instagram account?
    Yes!
    If so, what kind of pictures do you post? Examples: cat pictures, selfies, inspirational quotes
    I post pictures of my friends and events I go to.
    Were you shocked that more Instagram users are female than male?
    Not at all.
    Do you have a favorite filter to use on pictures?
    I love the HEFE filter, but I sneak Ludwig in every once in awhile.
    What is your favorite feature or tool to use on Instagram?
    I agree with Lauren about the location feature. I love not having to guess where people are. I do miss the custom locations you could type in. I always thought those were funny.
    Do you have any favorite famous people that you follow on Instagram?
    I follow Taylor Swift, who posts a lot of pictures of her cat. I also follow Reese Witherspoon just because she is gorgeous.

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    1. It’s really funny to me because I posted my comment before I read what you had posted and lotssss of our answers were extremely similar!!! LOVED the custom location

      Like

  3. Do you have an Instagram account?
    YES
    If so, what kind of pictures do you post? Examples: cat pictures, selfies, inspirational quotes
    I post pictures of me and my friends mostly, occasionally some pretty landscape pics..
    Were you shocked that more Instagram users are female than male?
    Not at all
    Do you have a favorite filter to use on pictures?
    I change it up every time! I just love how after you pick a filter there a still tons of options to adjust it to get the lighting just right
    What is your favorite feature or tool to use on Instagram?
    I used to really like being able to put whatever I wanted in the location spot…but they seemed to have changed that
    Do you have any favorite famous people that you follow on Instagram?
    hmm I mean all the hot male celebrities πŸ˜‰ but also just like accounts that post pretty pictures of beaches

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    1. Bekah I’m so glad you agree about the custom location. That was one of my favorite parts about Instagram. I almost boycotted the platform when I realized they took it away, but it’s Instagram, so I couldn’t stay away that long.

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    2. I’m always changing up filters too! I have a few favorites, but it always depends on the lighting of the picture and other things involved!

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      1. YES EXACTLY! Every picture is different! They all need a little touch up somewhere and the same filter doesn’t work for every picture!

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    3. I completely agree with your opinion on the location spot. I loved being able to put whatever I wanted in there and it was super frustrating when the update took it away.

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  4. Do you have an Instagram account?
    YAS
    If so, what kind of pictures do you post? Examples: cat pictures, selfies, inspirational quotes
    Selfies, pictures of friends, family, my fur babies
    Were you shocked that more Instagram users are female than male?
    Oh no. Females can post selfies and pictures of grass and it not be sought out as ‘weird’, but if guys do it, that’s a little odd.
    Do you have a favorite filter to use on pictures?
    X-Pro II
    What is your favorite feature or tool to use on Instagram?
    I like that you can brighten your pictures! I’ve take some pictures that are so dark, but with the brightness tool, they become Instagram worthy.
    Do you have any favorite famous people that you follow on Instagram?
    Justin Bieber, Mumford & Sons, you know the regular celebs.

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    1. I agree, I love brightening pictures! It makes it easy to edit so you can keep the pictures for other reasons than just posting!

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    2. I agree with your thoughts on females posting selfies and pictures of grass. If any of my guy friends were to post a picture of grass I would think it was a little weird, but if my best friend posted one I would think it was pretty artsy. The X – Pro II is another filter I like to use a lot too.

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  5. Yes I have an instagram! I post pictures with friends, family, and updates on things happening in my life like going to camp or things like that! I wasn’t shocked to find out more females were on instagram because the boys I know that have instagram use it less than my friends and I do. I use other apps to edit pictures because Instagram’s filters aren’t my favorite. I love the new Boomerang feature, even though I’ve only used it once. I think its a fun new way to post! Lastly, I don’t think I really follow any big celebrities except Lauren Conrad or Kayla Itsines.

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    1. I never thought to edit my pictures outside of the app! Sometimes I don’t even want to deal with trying to find a filter so I just don’t use one haha. I haven’t used the Boomerang feature yet, but I’ve been meaning to! I like seeing everyon Boomerang pictures.

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      1. I haven’t heard of the boomerang feature either, but it sounds really interesting just from the name. I like that Instagram keeps putting out new, cool stuff for us to do and I imagine that fact has had an affect on our popularity.

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  6. -Do you have an Instagram account? Yes I do.
    -If so, what kind of pictures do you post? Examples: cat pictures, selfies, inspirational quotes. I typically post pictures of me and my friends and family doing different things such as an exciting event.
    -Were you shocked that more Instagram users are female than male? Not at all. Most of my female friends post a lot more than my male friends.
    -Do you have a favorite filter to use on pictures? I don’t really use a filter. Instead, I use the self editing button and adjust my photos myself that way I can get them to look exactly how I want.
    -What is your favorite feature or tool to use on Instagram? I really like the self editing button. I’m not a huge fan of the filters unless I want a picture to be black and white, so the self editing tool is a really helpful thing to have around.
    -Do you have any favorite famous people that you follow on Instagram? I follow Tori Kelly and love to watch her videos and look at her pictures of all the exciting things she’s doing.

    Like

    1. That’s really cool that you self edit your pictures as opposed to using a filter. I’m going to have to try doing that next time I post a picture!

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  7. I have an Instagram account, although I recently deleted the app from my phone so I could focus on my studies. I typically post minimal/artsy pictures. I was not shocked that more users were female. I do not actually use Instagram filters – all of my photos were either edited on photoshop or on an app called VSCO. I follow my friends, plus semi-famous Instagrammers from Arkansas.

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    1. Props to you for deleting the app off of your phone! I don’t think I could ever bring myself to do that. I always am checking the app to see other postings, especially if I’m bored or somewhere I feel awkward. I’ll definitely have to go check out the accounts you mentioned!

      Like

  8. Do you have an Instagram account?
    -Yes.
    If so, what kind of pictures do you post? Examples: cat pictures, selfies, inspirational quotes
    – usually selfies, family photos, quotes, funny videos
    Were you shocked that more Instagram users are female than male?
    – No, I think females are more likely to want to capture and share different moments and memories, whereas males aren’t really into it as much.
    Do you have a favorite filter to use on pictures?
    – I don’t usually use filters unless it’s black/white.
    What is your favorite feature or tool to use on Instagram?
    – I guess the ability to edit photos if we want to.
    Do you have any favorite famous people that you follow on Instagram?
    – Yes, I live for reality television drama, so I usually follow people who are on there.

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  9. 1. I don’t not have an Instagram account
    2. N/A
    3. I wasn’t shocked to find out that more Instagram account because most women like to take pictures while men just like to enjoy the moment.
    4. I think the fun things on snapchat with different filter and funny things. I don’t really have a favorite filter.
    5. I don’t really know what kind of filter and features there are Instagram
    6. N/A

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  10. 1. I do have an instagram
    2. As a high schooler I used to post every cool picture I took, but now I usually just post if I go to an event or take a group picture with friends
    3. Not at all, the common assumption is women are more creative than men.
    4. I don’t like to use filters actually
    5. I like the tool that lets you brighten up pictures, because my phone was made in the 1800’s and can barely take pictures
    6. I follow Ben Rector, Natalie Portmann and Natalie Dormer. My three favorite celebrities.

    Like

  11. Do you have an Instagram account?
    Yes I do.
    If so, what kind of pictures do you post? Examples: cat pictures, selfies, inspirational quotes
    Basically just pictures of things I do with my friends or big life events!
    Were you shocked that more Instagram users are female than male?
    Not at all! I feel like females love Instagram more because we care about what people look like, how they dress, and who they are hanging out with. We are much more nosy, and a picture is worth a thousand words.
    Do you have a favorite filter to use on pictures?
    I love Valencia! and X Pro 2.
    What is your favorite feature or tool to use on Instagram?
    I love the filters! They are all so unique!
    Do you have any favorite famous people that you follow on Instagram?
    Yes, I love following the casts of my favorite tv shows!

    Like

    1. I also follow some of my fave TV stars! I especially like seeing what Aldis Hodge is up to since he’s one of the lead roles on WGN’s “Underground”!

      Like

  12. Do you have an Instagram account?
    Heck yes!
    If so, what kind of pictures do you post? Examples: cat pictures, selfies, inspirational quotes
    I just post pictures of what I’m doing or when I have an awesome day with friends.
    Were you shocked that more Instagram users are female than male?
    Not really, I remember that when the site first launched, it was described as a girly site.
    Do you have a favorite filter to use on pictures?
    I just use whatever makes me hotter!
    What is your favorite feature or tool to use on Instagram?
    I like that you can send direct images and text. Secret conversations are always fun.
    Do you have any favorite famous people that you follow on Instagram?
    I do follow some basketball players that I like.

    Like

  13. Do you have an Instagram account? Yes!
    If so, what kind of pictures do you post? Examples: cat pictures, selfies, inspirational quotes Usually I just post pictures of me and my friends, although if I travel somewhere cool I’ll post pictures of wherever I am.
    Were you shocked that more Instagram users are female than male? Not particularly–I’ve found that most of the people I follow are females and that the males I do follow post significantly less than girls.
    Do you have a favorite filter to use on pictures? I usually don’t even use the filters on the Instagram app; I’ll use a photo editing app and just upload that.
    What is your favorite feature or tool to use on Instagram? I was so happy when Instagram updated and got rid of the square confinement for pictures. It was very restricting on what pictures you could post without cutting off part of the pictures.
    Do you have any favorite famous people that you follow on Instagram? Not sure if this counts as a famous person, but I love the Humans of New York Instagram!

    Like

  14. Do you have an Instagram account?
    Yes!
    If so, what kind of pictures do you post? Examples: cat pictures, selfies, inspirational quotes
    Mainly selfies and other cool photos I take!
    Were you shocked that more Instagram users are female than male?
    Not really, mainly because that’s how Instagram really marketed itself.
    Do you have a favorite filter to use on pictures?
    I love Valencia! But it also really depends on the picture I take!
    What is your favorite feature or tool to use on Instagram?
    I definitely love using the color adjustments on the shadows and highlights because it lets me tint photos any which way I want!
    Do you have any favorite famous people that you follow on Instagram?
    John Boyega, one of the lead actors from the most recent Star Wars movie, because he’s really funny and loves posting about his life and his cat!

    Like

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