Instagram is without a doubt the number one thing that has sparked a new creative outlet in me and that is photography. Before Instagram I never really had a true interest in what aperture, mirrorless or DSLR meant. Since using Instagram I have a new found that creative outlet and I am grateful for that. That being said I struggle to hold back my frustration with the Instagram brand as a whole. The app first launched to iPhone users only. Now I’m not gonna start bashing Android users and say Android users can’t take good pictures or their phones suck because those are opinions that are not relevant to my argument. My argument lies in the fact that when you allowed the app to be iPhone only you created at least a minimum level of quality expectation for what was shared. Users of the app had a pretty good camera in their hands and with a tremendous suite of iPhone apps available for photography people used that to create a unique and niche community for “iPhoneography”. Then Facebook came along and with a no limit credit card and bought Instagram thus beginning the gradual demise of this once “white picket fence” community. Once Facebook acquired the app along came the “privacy panic” as I refer to when Facebook was basically saying we own your pics but because there is strength in numbers Instagram panicked and quickly jumped in to assure everyone that they (Instagram) would never own their pics and the users would be the one who owns them. Not a good way to start off an acquisition if you ask me. Then came the Android app. Now my beef with the Android app is that Android is well, not my favorite OS to say the least and we’ll just leave it at that to avoid the “fanboy” replies I would no doubt get had I stated my true opinion. That being said the issue lies in the fact that there are hundreds of Android devices on various carriers opening the doors to basically everyone and that “minimum level of quality expectation” we talked about earlier regarding what is shared is gone. Instagram is becoming more like a municipal landfill. In that I mean there is so much “junk” on there it blows my mind. Now don’t for a second think I’m discrediting the community as a whole. I LOVE Instagram and the community I’ve come to know and the people who work there are tremendous and i can’t express how much it has opened new doors and let me meet some cool people. There are TONS of people that actually use the app to share great photos but let’s be honest, if you haven’t browsed the “Popular Page” I suggest you do so and you’ll immediately see what I’m talking about. It’s nothing but pictures of nails, teenagers, meme’s, screenshots and pixelated photos they took off the internet. THAT is what pisses me off. It’s so hard to find other people who share a passion for photography when I have to filter through all this junk. Sure I could ignore it but as a user of the app it frustrates me that this is the process I have to go through. It’s really sad if you ask me. I saw a picture the other day of a kid probably 12 or 13 and he had a picture of himself with a caption that said “Double tap if your a girl”. It had over 10K likes. Seriously? It just infuriates me that that an app can start off SOOOO great can become worse and worse with time and all because it was in my opinion “acquired”. I can only hope that a developer/designer out there designs an app similar to Instagram that requires things like a two-step verification for sign up, community blocking of users who post “junk” material and is of course iOS only. For now I guess I’ll just have to keep dreaming and stick to following the people I’ve respected and admired since first joining.