The continuing saga of social media: Instagram

Hey everyone, I’m on Instagram!

I wanted to check in quickly. I agreed to teach two classes this month and I’m doing some consulting so I’ll be busy for awhile.  I’m continuing to write. I’ve been jumping back and forth from writing a sequel to Virtuous Souls to writing a new book, a murder mystery, which I’m really enjoying.

I can’t spend a lot of time on social media this summer, but I’ll give you an update. So far I have 2700 Twitter followers.  Not bad!  It’s not because I’m special. Writers are surging on Twitter for a lot of different reasons, I’ll talk about that later.

Right now I want to talk about Instagram. I want to diversify my social media.  I thought I’d hate Instagram (sound familiar?). I’m not photogenic. Some people look better on camera.  Some people look the same. Some people look like they’ve been dragged from Hell. That’s me. Okay, I’m being hyperbolic, but I don’t like having my picture taken. Unfortunately, on Instagram people want to see pictures of your face. This is your story. They want to see you.

What’s interesting about Instagram is that it’s an aesthetic story.  It’s artistic, and I’m enjoying trying to portray my life in pictures and also present my artistic style (or maybe — get some).  I’m slowly getting better at it.  Each medium allows you to express yourself in a different way.  I’m happy I got engaged with social media; I needed to learn about the process. Not just the technology, but also the social complexity and how it’s changed people’s experience with our culture and their identity. Kids grow up differently than they used to. Some things you have to experience to understand. As a professor in education it I like to experiences these things before talking about them. Truthfully, I never understood social media until I engaged with it (beyond a few Facebook posts) myself.

Surprisingly, I’m enjoying Instagram, but I’m also confused. Twitter I understand completely.  I get the social nuances, the complexity, the goals. But Instagram, who is it is for exactly? Is it something for friends or for everyone? Do you follow people you know or people who have pretty pictures? Most people have private accounts so how do you know who to follow? I’m lost! My numbers aren’t going up very fast because I have no idea what I’m doing, and that’s fine.  I’ll take this one slowly.  You have to be careful on social media not to give people the wrong impression. Some people think social media sites are dating sites.

Anyway, I do like seeing all the cute pictures of people, their dogs, their kids, and their gardens. Young people use Instagram a lot and they’re good at it.  It’s artistic and aesthetic and visual and joyous and it lifts my spirits to see people having fun and enjoying themselves.

Anyway, I’ll get back to you after my work slows down.

So, follow me on Instagram!

And don’t forget Twitter too! @plepage

Pam

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