As someone whose existence is very much tied to their internet connectivity, I’ve always considered myself up to date on everything relating to the internet. I know my way around a meme, can craft a favorite heavy tweet about almost anything, and know the rules of snapchat like the back of my hand.
So my introduction to Finstagram was pretty much out of blue and very, very unexpected. I was scrolling through my discover page, gazing at pictures of cute dogs and perfectly made pasta dishes, when I suddenly had a new follower notification pop up.
The name wasn’t one that I totally, recognized, but it was a variation of the name of one of my very close friends. I accepted, asked to follow back, and texted her, confused.
She quickly informed that yes, it was her, and yes, it was her fake instagram, of Finsta, for short. It was where she could post funny things or ugly pictures or photos of her drunk off her ass without worrying that it would hurt her in the long run. She only let about 15 people follow the account, she explained, so she wasn’t worried that anything would come back to bite her in the ass.
I’m a pretty big supporter of any and all things relating to social media or online personas. Hell, my chosen career path thrives on them. I always feel a little bit like a hypocrite when I say that I don’t think Instagram is great for anyone, on the whole. Even though it is a huge part of my job, keeping up with social media is kind of a burden. I feel like I should be on board with having a place to share want you think is the real you without having to worry about people judging you. But I cannot, and will not, support anyone having a finstagram. I’m sorry, but it’s just stupid.
My friend’s main reason was she could post cool photos from her nights out without worrying that someone would see them and take it to mean certain things about her character. She wouldn’t have to worry about whether or not she was going to get in trouble with our chapter standards, or with the job. But that’s assuming that everyone who follows isn’t going to get angry. I screenshot anything I think is funny or weird and send it to a group chat without second thought. If you’re worried enough that the image could hurt you to the point that you have to create a secondary Insta, then yeah. Remember the golden rule: only release embarrassing content (nudes, selfies, sex tapes) if you can maybe get a reality television empire from it.
Secondly, Instagram is supposed to show a reflection of your world. With all the types of editing available, I know that pretty much nothing on Insta is real anymore, but that doesn’t mean we don’t take things that are posted at face value. Unless you are making hundreds of dollars off sponsorship deals on Instagram, there is no reason to keep with your ~aesthetic~. A finstagram is just a step toward allowing your online persona to be even less like the real you. If you think something is funny or cool, but don’t want to post it because it doesn’t go with your theme, then you get your priorities in order. Social media is supposed to be fun.
Finstagrams make it easier to hide who we actually are and what we actually like. It allows us to only be genuine with a small group of people. And if you’re so concerned about an ugly picture of you getting out, but you still want to show it to someone? Then get off your ass, find them and show it to them in person. Believe me, no one can leak a memory.