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I have to say I love Instagram. It has become a huge staple in my daily life. Instagram is a great way to stay connected to those you may not see everyday, but it’s also just a good way to see what’s happening in the world and its huge for creating your brand and marketing yourself. I’ve recently started to create my own brand and Instagram has been extremely helpful, but there are definitely things that I wish were different.
I created a talk show that I’m planning on airing on Instagram TV. I think Instagram TV is such a great platform. My generation is literally always on Instagram, so Instagram TV is super accessible and it’s a great way to watch something. I’ve learned that the longest video can only be 10 minutes. That’s the first thing that I would change. If you’re calling something “TV”, it should really capture what TV is. On TV you can watch shores that range from 30 minutes to two hours. Instagram TV needs to allow longer videos to be posted. I would make it more like Facebook Watch. On Facebook, you can watch full length episodes. Red Table Talk, with Jada Pinkett Smith is one of their most popular shows and Facebook Watch is the perfect platform for them to use. Instagram TV would benefit from accommodating the needs of a variety of users. I would love to be able to go on Instagram and stream a 30-minute episode of something like Red Table Talk.
I would also change how likes are viewed. I think this is something that they already kind of talked about doing and I totally agree. People are so concerned with how many likes they get on a post. I know people who time their posts to the second to make sure they get the most optimal results. I also know people who if they don’t like the amount of likes they receive; they will actually delete the post and post it at a more popular time. We’re beginning to measure our worth based on our likes and it’s becoming very unhealthy. I believe that you should post whatever you want to post on Instagram, without worrying if people will like it or accept it. Who cares how many likes a post receives, if you love it then that should be enough. People have literally created “finstas” or fake Instagram accounts, so they could actually show their true selves. On these accounts, these accounts, no one cares about how many followers they have or how many likes they receive. They are happy because of the content that they produced and posted. By getting rid of the likes, maybe we won’t need to create “finstas” anymore. Of course, I understand that this basically wipes out influences, since their engagement is based on how much money they will make. But at the end of the day, money isn’t everything and the mental health of Instagram users should be a priority.
Another thing that is really frustrating about Instagram, is that they make it very difficult to grow a new brand. They have so many requirements when it comes to some of their features. For instance, you have to have a certain number of followers to add a link or to be able to “swipe up”. I really don’t understand why that is. Everyone should be able to post a link to their work or allow people to swipe up to see what they’re advertising. I believe that there should be a more even playing field and this would be a great start.
Overall, Instagram is a great platform and a great tool for sharing content and ideas. They make it pretty easy and accessible and are always adding fun, new features. It’s a great way to promote yourself or your brand and an even better way to stay connected to those around you.
Lexi Cardoza is a student in Jon Pfeiffer’s media law class at Pepperdine University, wrote the above essay in response to the following question: If you were in charge of Instagram for one week, what changes would you make to the platform? The class covers copyright and social media. Lexi is a Journalism and Public Relations double-major.
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