You may have seen some news this week about a new Instagram feature: The app now allows you to tag and be tagged in photos. It works exactly like you’d think it would. After uploading a photo, you have the option to add people to it.
Sounds simple enough, right? We’ve been conditioned to accept tagging, be it via Twitter or Facebook, or even Instagram’s former half-hearted option for awhile now.
But note that with this update comes a “Photos of You” tab, where people can see everything that your friends and followers have tagged you in.
Your first reaction might be total acceptance. But your second might be more like mine: Absolute effing horror.
Remember back when Facebook was just college kids? And you would go to parties and hold those red cups and people would take pictures and within what seemed like hours those pictures would be up and on Facebook for the entire world to see? Well back then it didn’t matter: Unless someone was a fellow student, they couldn’t see these incredibly incriminating and embarrassing photos. Tagging – which, mind you, was a totally new concept that everybody went absolutely nuts over – wasn’t a terrifying thought.
Of course, all that has changed. Social media isn’t the youngster, insider game it used to be. Ooooooh no. That was over a long time ago. It was either the day your mom friend requested you’ or when you realized that your former college roommate now works at a legit company that, hey, you’d love to apply to … if only she couldn’t view those pictures of you doing a keg stand.
The point is, Facebook used to be a safe place! It lured us into this false sense of security! Share those photos! There are no consequences! Except, oh wait, yes, there totally are, and it’s the worst.
Et tu, Instagram?
Same story, different social app. It started out small and exclusive. Grew a tight, loyal community. It was great! Seriously, I feel like a week ago I was all in on Instagram, just thinking, “Aw shucks! I mean, Instagram, you are just … you are just great. With your filters and your relative lack of spam and how no one can privately message me (code for annoy me). Way to keep it simple!”
Why you gotta do me like that, Instagram?
I’m sucker and I got played because YET AGAIN I was sucked in to feeling the freedom. No one can tag me in this noise, so what the hell! You take that picture of me doing a Jager Bomb! Sure, mom and dad, take and post photos of those hideous middle years I’d love to forget! It matters not!
How wrong I was.
So now, in addition to religiously monitoring the photographic evidence of my shenanigans that my “friends” (so they call themselves) post of me on Facebook, Instagram is added to the mix. Gone of the days of a carefree, Amaro-filtered photos of my shambles and derp-ness and enter those wherein I’m compulsively checking my news tab in paranoia.
They can take our Instagram anonymity … but they can never take … our freedom!
Except that yeah, they totally can and just did.