Two years without Instagram

Two years ago, my wife, a few friends, and I went to upstate New York to relax for a couple of days for camping. There was one thing that nobody expected — the cellular coverage was so low that we couldn’t use any mobile internet.

As a geek, I was frustrated for a while, but then I found a way to enjoy the journey, and it was fine. We even laughed together, trying to guess what had happened in the world while we were out and what news would be waiting for us when we got back to the place with wi-fi.

Once we got back we learnt that nothing crucial happened in the world. My timeline was still the same — Meta engineers did their best to make sure I was satisfied seeing all my friends’ updates.

But I wasn’t.

In just a few days away, I realized I didn’t want to share anything, nor did I want to consume anything. It was like a breath of fresh air. I realized I didn’t want to use Instagram anymore.

Instagram was my favorite social network for a long time. I remember when I had an Android phone and envied all the iPhone users who could publish photos to the Instagram. Then I got an iPhone myself and was extremely happy to share my pictures.

I spent a lot of time editing photos to make sure they looked good. I followed people all over the world to get inspired. And it was an amazing time.

But then Facebook bought it and started killing the vibe. I was fine with additional functionality like messages, stories, streams, and others. Even ads didn’t let me down as much as the algorithmic timeline did.

I just hate the idea of letting somebody else decide what content I want to see and when I want to see it.

So I tried to live with this frustration until I went camping with my friends two years ago. After this trip, I realized I just didn’t need it — neither Instagram nor Facebook.

I didn’t delete my accounts since I still want to keep those memories. Like our life in China, trip to Morocco, or daily life in Moscow. But I don’t update them, don’t check them, and don’t have the apps on my phone.

I thought it would be much more difficult, especially when it seems that everybody is using it. But apparently, the only time I really needed it was when I was choosing a tattoo artist in Belgrade, and all of them were using Instagram. But I could still check it from my mobile browser and found the best one.

And now, two years later, I’m kind of happy that I don’t use Instagram anymore.

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