This is another blog topic that came from a conversation with my sister. Both she and I use Instagram pretty frequently as a more personal account than Twitter, since Twitter is fairly bound up with professional networking (and Facebook is a lot less immediate and straightforward in how it’s timeline works) but she uses her Instageam account a lot more, and often to post food.
Today she mentioned that she likes to post pictures of food because when she’s making it for one, putting in effort feels more worthwhile if she can share it with others and see their appreciation for it.
This got me thinking about online sharing again. Time and time again sharing parts of our lives is treated as something narcissistic, shallow, approval seeking and generally an all round bad thing. But in this instance it’s more of a casual social interaction, even if it’s with people we don’t know outside of social media, or even at all.
There’s a certain lovely positivity to getting a like on Instagram or Facebook, yes, it doesn’t require much effort on the part of the people liking or mean much to the person posting on a personal level. But it’s not meaningless. It’s the person giving you an encouraging smile when you’re out jogging, or absentmindedly saying good morning to you on the bus to work. It’s the online equivalent of those little interactions with strangers or acquaintances that happen all the time, which are actually a major part of our society.
(Just for the record, this blog was kind of a ramble and strayed somewhat from my original topic. I’m enjoying writing in this fashion though, following my thoughts and seeing where I end up.)