So the world is in uproar and chaos on very many levels right now and there isn’t a single one of us not reeling from the events in France and Turkey, general political upheaval and economic uncertainty. Which might explain the nutty success of Pokemon Go (yes, we’re on Level 3, ‘kay!) and the passionate, ok, fiery reactions to the new Instagram timeline and algorithm (myself included!…)
It looks like the new Instagram non-chronological timeline has finally rolled out to most people’s account, including mine yesterday. It does feel like having the carpet pulled out from beneath you when suddenly the way you’re used to digesting and responding to everything is turned on its head. This is one of the reasons I don’t use Facebook that much anymore;I hate the disruptive confusion of reading a friend’s funny/alarming post and then realising it’s something that happened days ago! It feels irrelevant in the context.
I’m definitely one of those people who likes to know what’s happening right now, as opposed to 24 hours ago; social media’s huge success has been its realtime aspect, surely? Anyway, I don’t think moaning is going to change things in this case (as per 2nd referendum hopers, yes, that was me ill-conceived or not! Although it seems that VSCO has listened to its users and re-introduced the option of the square display – see below!) I think we’re going to just need to adjust as gracefully as possible, look forward and figure out how best to go about things.
But as far as the new Instagram environment goes, here’s what I’ve learnt so far:
- To gain and maintain visibility to your followers your posts need to be energised with likes and comments. Being engaged yourself with accounts you like, of course, helps here. So interact with the people you like and who like you.
- Posts aren’t time sensitive anymore, BUT high engagement in the 30 minutes or so after posts does seem to push you up the visibility scale. But also posts are ‘living’ much longer now it seems – I’m seeing posts from up to 24 hours ago, whereas before a post seemed would get buried after about four hours.
- Make use of your other social platforms (Twitter, Facebook etc) to remind people of your lovely Instagram account !
- I’ve going so far as remind people if they want to see my posts (I’ve had a couple of people mention I’m not coming up in their timeline anymore) then they should just like a whole bunch of my posts to ‘tell’
- For an utterly fascinating insight into Instagram behaviour, the new algorithm and how teens are always straight on if in an annoying (to Kylie Jenner!) way read this (although not something I would recommend, kay!).
Think back a few weeks ago when VSCO users were having a massive meltdown about the latest automatic update. They didn’t like the new layout – which has moved further and further away from the square grid display everyone adored (not least because it helped them plan their Instagram!)
But amazingly (!) VSCO did listen and today they reintroduced the square format as a display option if you want it that way, albeit against a bordered black background…
- You can change your Images display in Settings. You probably have a big blue signpost showing you where to go or you just scroll to the top where your name is against a header of your most recent picture, click into Settings beneath your username and then Preferences. Scroll down to Studio and there you can change your Display size between three options, including the square layout. It is bordered widely in black but overall a very friendly compromise I think!
- I’ll admit I’m finding VSCO a little hard to navigate around. The Library is now called the Studio and you swipe from your Studio to your feed and journal (if you’re publishing) and main VSCO feed via the three lined circle at the bottom. Or if your Studio mysteriously disappears tap the little downward facing arrow in the top left corner to bring it back.
- Collection seems to be a new publishing feature which allows you pull in your own photos and other users and publish as a Collection. Tbh I haven’t tried this yet… The VSCO Collection is where they feature user pictures. I do upload to my VSCO profile as VSCO’s is a very beautiful, visual world to be part of.
- So: swipe left to access camera, swipe right to get to your Studio for picture editing…
Overall, a bit of a random jumble of thoughts about all the recent changes to apps that play a crazy huge part of my daily life. Would love to hear your thoughts and experience of it all!