What Is An Instagram?

An Instagram picture typically has faux-torn edges, vignetting (darkness around the sides and corners), and odd color filters applied.
An Instagram picture typically has faux-torn edges, vignetting (darkness around the sides and corners), and odd color filters applied. | Source

Have you heard someone mention “instagrams” and not known what they meant?  Instagram is an app for the iPhone which lets people apply filters to their images, and easily share them.  Instagram became one of the hot apps in 2010, which means that all the cool kids were suddenly swapping and uploading pictures with weird effects on them. 

The Instagram effect is immediately recognizable, once you know what you’re looking at.  It usually includes sepia tone or a blue tone, scratchy or blurry edges on the photo, hyper-real colors, and other effects that make it look like an old photo from the early days of color film.  Chances are good that if you’re looking at someone’s recent picture, and it looks like anything other than a straight-up digital photo, it’s been run through Instagram.

A lot of people got tired of this trend quickly, with critics complaining that “every single photo looks the same” and “You faux-nostalgic Instagram users: your [lousy] pics still look [lousy] in sepia tone.  Stop it.”  The ubiquity of the effect, the similarity between Instagrammed photos (there are only so many filters, and most users tend to pick from the most popular), and the perceived connection between Instagrams and iPhone-wielding hipsters all made the backlash pop up almost immediately.

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Comments 1 comment

Jerome 4 years ago

Ha! I dont know how old this blog is (no date?) but I'm getting sick of all the Instagram pics everywhere...I took a great pic the other day and felt like I was "not playing the game" by not adding "Hipstamatic" effects when I uploaded it. Plus...all those filters pretty much look the same, except for tilt-shift...that sh*ts weird but pretty funny lol.

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