Editorial

Editorial: Can't we all just get along on Instagram?

Instagram is arguably one of the biggest social photo sharing networks of this modern day and age, and whilst many will argue that it is for hipsters, I like to think of it as a great way to share your work and enthusiasm as a photographer or a social network addict. The fact is, the recent hate towards the service has come from iPhone users to users of Instagram for Android.

Why I use Instagram 

I use Instagram because I am a part-time Android developer who switches between devices more than Kim Kardashian does with men – so as a media student, I cannot afford to lose valuable decent pictures of my photography. Minus a few personal pictures, Instagram is essentially a light-hearted approach to what I’d consider being a semi-decent portfolio of some of my work.

Switching to and from various Android devices and having to wipe everything from time to time often makes me forget about valuable data on my devices that aren't a part of the Android operating system that I’m developing for. Instagram really seems to make me an even bigger enthusiast in photography and image sharing because of my personal needs – I am not what most people would consider a hipster, but it is generally nice to find people with similar interests on the net. 

The problem I have with the community of Instagram users 

One statement that I’ve been hearing a lot is the assumption that Android users are “cheap” and because of that, we aren’t welcome to the service. I have a huge amount of respect for Apple and its vision to innovate consistent design implementations, but I believe most of the users calling Android users cheapskates do not. 

I’m not even upset in the slightest about the so-called Instagram war, but it brings up an interesting point of how extreme fanboy- and fangirl-ism has expanded out of game consoles and onto smartphones. I’ve always said that consumers should stick to a reliable manufacturer of choice and always have an open mind for manufacturers who continue to push the barriers of innovation and availability in different forms.

Outraged iPhone users are considering an alternative to Instagram

It would seem that some iPhone users feel so betrayed due to the availability of Instagram for Android, that a few of them are abandoning the service and using iOS-only applications like PicYou, as a result. PicYou has recently been downloaded over 125,000 times which is an astonishing boost from the 1,000 to 4,000 daily downloads it received prior to the release of Instagram for Android. 

Embrace the ability to share interests with photography

It is hardly fair to slate a product like Android – which as a platform is offering the same service to a large audience. Why are we categorizing users? I feel it is outrageous that just because some of the users have different budgets for smartphones, that they shouldn't use Instagram. My Nexus S and Galaxy S II were more expensive than an iPhone 4 and the 4S at launch – so calling Android users "cheap" is irrelevant and quite rude towards users who may be unable to afford such high-end devices.

The price of your preferred smartphone brand has nothing to do with the ability to share pictures, and whilst ignorance from iPhone users is really proving to be a pain to some Android users, the ability to expand a photo-sharing community should be embraced more appropriately – wasn't Instagram created for exactly that reason in the first place?

What's next?

As of today, things have already changed for Instagram because Facebook has just acquired Instagram for $1 billion. This means that there's a chance that Instagram will be integrated into Facebook as a core application, rather than just as a 3rd party application. Instagram may be hated even more now that the service is going even more public but as stated previously, isn't that the point of a photo sharing service? And shouldn't the service be embraced more if that is the case? 

My Instagram name is "zeikku" for those interested. Feel free to leave comments and let us know what you think.

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29 Comments

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L1ke 20 N1njas said,
More people are freaking out about the Facebook's acquisition of Instagram, I'd say.

freaking out about Facebook acquisition = hipster
freaking out about Android app = iPhone elitist

Actually, I think that they should be happy that Apple didn't buy Instagram and then forced people to upgrade to the iPhone 5 to get access to it.

I find the comments made about this highly amusing. If you need quick laughs it's a great thing to read though (note: I mean elsewhere not Neowin )

Chasethebase said,
I find the comments made about this highly amusing. If you need quick laughs it's a great thing to read though (note: I mean elsewhere not Neowin )

Indeed.
However, you can get an overdose of narrow-mindness and idiocy pretty quick.

I recommend: Don't go for the lols without a desk nearby, because sometimes you really have to hit it hard with your head to get some of the crap out before it burns in and makes you weep how intense overly fanboyism, general idiocy and rudeness can go.

GS:mac

This doesn't really sound like anything new, this just sounds like typical Apple elitism. You get the same thing with the whole PC debate. It usually goes like this.

Windows user: Windows= gets the job done / OSX= expensive rip off / LINUX= extreme computer nerd

Mac user: Windows= buggy, unstable pile of **** / OSX= best OS evar!11!!/ LINUX= poor beggar who wants free stuff.

LINUX user: Windows= evil close source Microsoft / OSX= it's unix dumb ass / LINUX= computing master race.

All of the above user= You're all a bunch of dumb asses... use the tool for the job and shut the f*** up. ¬_¬

Semi serious stereotyping aside, this whole attitude of supporting another platform is "betrayal" may come from the old developer license agreement that states that they can't use third-party SDK's, which as a result stopped cross-platform development kits in their tracks.
I will say one thing. Apple sure knows what strings to pull to make their puppets dance.

I've tried Instragram... I used Pixr' o'Matic before that... After some days of use... I kept using Pixr o'Matic... It's quite easy to do what I want with it... apply filters and share photos...

After using it for a bit, to me Instagram are delusional users who suddenly think they are photographers after sticking an OTT filter on a snap shot taken from a ****ty camera on a phone.

I apologize but I do not seem to understand the core of the problem, as I am not an Instagram user. The article does not discuss it much, so could someone do me the favor and explain? I understood iPhone users are ****ed off by Instagram coming to Android too, but why? Is it really the "Now I will have to look at what poor people eat", or is the core something else? It feels so ridiculous...

It's pretty much as ridiculous as it sounds: discrimination against Android users because of the phones they choose to use. Some very vocal iOS users are very upset that Android users now have access to a community they think should be exclusive to them. Fortunately this is just an immature subset of iOS users that should probably be ignored.

Jugger.naut said,
I apologize but I do not seem to understand the core of the problem, as I am not an Instagram user. The article does not discuss it much, so could someone do me the favor and explain? I understood iPhone users are ****ed off by Instagram coming to Android too, but why? Is it really the "Now I will have to look at what poor people eat", or is the core something else? It feels so ridiculous...

Brainwashed cult members thats what they are, no thought required !


The Dark Knight said,
Seriously....Apple users, who the F*** do you think you are?!

jusD said,
Brainwashed cult members thats what they are, no thought required !



Really, all users (fanboys wasn't the catchphrase)?

Makes you look no better than iOS fanboys.

GS:mac

iOS communities
--------------------------

Positive comment : Welcoming Android users on Instagram, follow me back and let's make friends
Negative comment : F**k Instagram coming on Android, not exclusive anymore and some more most Android have crappy camera and cheap...plus no tilt shift, no live preview and many other features...Instagram for iOS a way better than Instagram Android

Android communities
------------------------

Positive comments : yay, at last instagram for android...been waiting for 1 year...i love taking photos and sharing with the world
Negative comments : Meh, instagram is a piece of crap app, not worthy the hype...another app has better filters and beautiful than overrated instagram

#TrueStory

Edited by Eins.MY, Apr 10 2012, 3:54am :

As a real photographer, this app ****es me off. As a android user that does like playing with a photo app every once in a while, it is cool.

It takes all the hard work out of taking a really good picture.

I do use the app but if anyone thinks this is real photography, your out of your mind.

steveomac said,
As a real photographer, this app ****es me off. As a android user that does like playing with a photo app every once in a while, it is cool.

It takes all the hard work out of taking a really good picture.

I do use the app but if anyone thinks this is real photography, your out of your mind.


Could you please elaborate on what does it mean of real photography and real photographer sir?

steveomac said,
As a real photographer, this app ****es me off. As a android user that does like playing with a photo app every once in a while, it is cool.

It takes all the hard work out of taking a really good picture.

I do use the app but if anyone thinks this is real photography, your out of your mind.


This is the kind of elitism the pioneers in photography wanted to get rid of.

Photography was born in times when all the hype was getting a picture PAINTED of you, taking hours, not being with you (so all but instant or simple) and of cause: it was exclusive to those with big wallets.

Photography eventually brought the ability to capture moments, portraits and everything else to everyone, the term "democratizing photography" was born after photography albeit being an alternative to painting, was pretty expensive. (equipment)

When the first cameras became available at reasonable prices for more professionals and eventually for hobbyists, that was when photography unveiled a true power: picturing the world.
You have not been to Dubai, yet, it is SO simple to find reports, trip suggestions and: PHOTOS.

I'm a photography enthusiast myself and boy do I avoid saying Instagram is as complex, thought out or anything like that, however, maybe "lomography" rings a bell for you?
I hope I don't have to explain lomography, as it essentially means: forget rules period.
The creation and joy in it ultimately is the art, making the creation simple and democratizing it and making it creative to everyone - simple - hence.
Now you might get bored of the same effects all over the place and I'll give you that, however, see it as something people might dip into, eventually even the "simple minded" will develop some greater joy in experimentation, use different tools, expand their expectations of their own works or whatever terms applies to that in your view.
Or, second route: they eventually are fed up with it and go straight photo taking again, no retro effects included, OR more effects get added and are more customizable and enrich the content on Instagram.

I myself you Piictu a little for example, it's a no effects website, albeit you can use anything you take and save to the camera roll in other apps.


All I'm trying to say is this:
There is no "real photography", because you imply elitism - not everyone can do photography, which is utter BS, with all due respect fellow pixel lover.
I see you are enthusiastic as it seems and hence get feelings of protectionism, I'll give you it's not out of a snobby attitude, but you should really think again about what photography is.
Yes, you can use more or less effort, but in the end, it's art whether you like it or not, whether I like it or not, whether... you get the idea.
Art is expression, however simple that may be.
I can give you the names of artists (photographers or not) who created works that are way simpler in nature, but sell for lots of money or not half as doubted to be artists as Instagramers are.
We ALL are artists in some form.

Of cause the discussion about what is art and what is not can get endless, but I think specifically what photography was ever meant to be, turned to be and what it was and still is - that is what all great photographers profited from.

GS:mac

I don´t see any use of Instagram in Android enviroment, I take a picture, this is uploaded to my google+ account as simple as that whitout any other step or keypressing. Why should i bother to use another application as Instagram?

I've never understood the whole fanboy thing. I have an iPhone as it came out first and I would possibly change as Android has some cool apps (race ace to name just one) but I have poured so much money into the Apple store it wouldnt make good economic sense. Its like the PS3 Xbox thing or Holden Vs Ford, although thats more serious and its Holden always...never never Ford....

Hows the current season going spader ? BLUE OVAL M8, BLUE OVAL !!!!

spader said,
I've never understood the whole fanboy thing. I have an iPhone as it came out first and I would possibly change as Android has some cool apps (race ace to name just one) but I have poured so much money into the Apple store it wouldnt make good economic sense. Its like the PS3 Xbox thing or Holden Vs Ford, although thats more serious and its Holden always...never never Ford....

naaah, those whiny iPhone users can have their app back, no one can develop their apps but devs and android devs can make better app and that will benefit the android community. just feed those iphone elitists with what they want.

As an Android user and general avoider of Cupertino products, I'm still going to call shenanigans.

Apps on iOS are generally better than apps on Android because the devs behind them prioritize the platform. Every company I've worked with that's developed mobile applications has obsessed over the iOS release, while the Android version is an afterthought.

There are the community-driven applications that are unique to Android, but frankly, what those will offer in functionality, they will lack egregiously in design and user experience. The curse of all things 'open' is form-after-...everything else. If ever.

iOS users will first laugh that Windows Phone does not have the large app market that iOS has, and they take even greater glee that it does not have Instagram. Then they turn around and whine that Instagram decided to support Android.

Since there are some strong relationships between Microsoft and Facebook, with Facebook's purchase of Instagram hopefully it will accelerate Instagram on WP7. Can't wait to see the iOS fanboys squirm when that happens.

tsupersonic said,
Tweets like this: https://twitter.com/#!/m0n...statuses/187220377397772289

It's not even an iPhone vs. Android debate. It's just the app. is so freaking useless. It applies useless filters to any photo and ruins any photo instantly. I can already share photos to Facebook/Twitter from my phone with pictures taken from the camera app, so WTF is the point of it?

The filters are optional. The picture of the beer was just cropped from the original. It's just a place to share interests via photo format, I guess. I like it because I can't post certain pictures on my Facebook. I also appreciate the fact I back up anything that I feel looks good instantly. I can understand why people find the application useless though.

Yeah, seeing the Apple elitists get so upset over this almost makes me want to download the program on my Android phone.

But no, I still hate photo filters and there are dozens of other photo sharing services. I'm still baffled over why this app became so popular in the first place.