Hi, my name is Natalie. And I am an Instagram addict. I say this because when the sacred 3G symbol at the top of my iPhone disappears, Wi-Fi is ‘unable to connect’, and I am forsaken in what might as well be Siberia, I begin to experience a cold sweat. I start thinking irrationally. “Oh God, what if Kendall Jenner posts something, what if I never see it?! What if this is the end?”
The ‘insta’ aspect of Instagram is as much a blessing as it is a curse. Watching, interacting, experiencing the real world has been rather brutally usurped by an unhealthy obsession with an app that never sleeps. I’m like a drug addict with a constant and boundless stream of heroin at my eager and helpless fingertips. I am forever being told off by my boyfriend for ‘cyber stalking’ celebrities. But I don’t think he quite understands…
And I don’t think I am alone. It is so popular that apparently the founder of Instagram, Kevin Systrom, would only consider selling his non-profit app to Mark Zuckerburg, the founder of Facebook, for a minimum of 2 billion dollars. There are about 200 million monthly users and approximately 5 million posts made a day. I myself am just shy of following 1000 accounts. A figure made up of numerous models, fashion bloggers, fashion houses, magazines, Z-list celebrities; I even follow Paris Hilton’s dog (Peter Pan) and Cara Delevinge’s bunny (Cecil). It is direct, seemingly personal and, most importantly, free—hallelujah! I don’t have to scrape at the bottom of my bag for moldy one-penny coins so I can afford this month’s issue of Vogue, because yes, I am a student, and yes, I am a 12th-century-peasant kind of poor.
And because I will never be Anna Wintour or Anna Della Russo, Instagram enables me to sit with the elite ‘frow’ on every major fashion house’s catwalk. So fine, maybe I need a good 14-day Instagram detox, and should try and overcome my (very 21st century) anxiety. But I’m not deleting my Instagram account any time soon. Sorry boyfriend.
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