Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Instagram - Yea or Nay?

This weekend, partially on a whim, and partially because I've been intrigued about this particular app, I joined Instagram.

For my user name, I wanted to use RamblinGarden, which is my Twitter handle, but Instagram wouldn't accept it.  I do want to keep my ramblin' "brand name" in some way.  So, for now, it's under my real name. I don't even know if I should change it, as I am not sure I want to promote my blog there.

I'm a newbie, and fumbling my way around. I am not totally encouraged by this post by a blogger, Shirley Corder, whose blog I was introduced to right before the Blogging from A to Z Challenge.  However, I took the leap, based on some feedback from my Facebook friends.

So far, the people I am following are mostly Facebook friends - a lot of them are on Instagram, too (some, I suspect, are to follow grandchildren).  This isn't a total surprise as Facebook owns Instagram.

I don't take (many) selfies.  I don't have a cute dog or cat.  (I don't HAVE a dog or cat.).  I am not pleased by the fact that you can't turn off videos (not a good thing when you are not on wi fi) only slow them down.  I certainly won't be opening the app during my lunch hour at work.  I rarely take pictures of my food, except for one of my rare recipe blog posts.  I'm somewhat private about my family.  So, should I even be on there?

I'll try not to be too disappointed by all the commercial content.  In fact, one of the first things that greeted me upon joining was a video posted by my credit union.  Ugh.  On the other hand, I quickly found, and liked, NatGeo.

But, if you follow me, you may find pictures like this, from a May 8 walk through the west side of Binghamton, New York (once I have time to upload them):

Creeping phlox (one of many I've taken, and I won't bore you further).

A young dogwood against a red maple tree

Cherry blossoms.

I do love flowers.  Can you tell?

I'll just have to see how it goes.  If you enjoy the pictures on my blog, you are welcome to follow me at alana_mautone. (I have to find some way to get a "follow me on Instagram" for my sidebar, too.)

For now, a few short questions for you, my dear readers:  are you on Instagram?  If so, what have your experiences been?


Do you still use it, or was it too disappointing?

And, what was your best resource for getting up to speed (which I don't have much time to devote to)?

Thank you for your time!

34 comments:

  1. Instagram? I am not even on Facebook. Maybe it is because after having a career in the local public eye and being hounded at times by media, I just do not want just anyone to know everything about me.

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  2. I've been on Instagram for a couple of years now, but only recently really started using it

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    1. Thank you for sharing your experience, Jennifer. Funny - I joined Facebook in 2009 and did nothing for the first year or so.

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  3. Alana,

    I do not use Instagram for all the same reason as you but have an account. DD#2 uses it and I noticed the image quality is horrible which bothers me. I guess it's okay for those who want to keep in touch with friends/family long distance but if you're photographing nature, etc then you might as well just put your pix on Facebook and forget Instagram. I don't even share a lot of photos on FB. I say Instagram like any other app it's a huge data sucker and battery-draining hog. I do not use the FB app for this reason, as well as their notorious habit of trying to spy on you at every turn and will sell your info to 3rd party companies. Obviously there's a big Instagram following so you're going to get mixed reviews. My suggestion is if it doesn't grab you then don't worry about it. I'm still trying to figure out the Twitter thingy. lol Have a good day! ;)

    ~Curious as a Cathy
    Watercolor Iris Mother's Day card

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    1. I hear you, Cathy! Thanks for your observations. I already am peeved that you can't turn off Instagram videos (you can turn off Facebook videos).

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  4. I am not on Instagram. Mostly because I use my phone for talking (and Scrabble, when I stuck waiting in line) and not much else.

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    1. As opposed to me, who treats her iPhone as a camera and browser with a phone attached.

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  5. I'm on instagram. Lately I'm finding most people post the same photo to their instagram and their Facebook. But younger daughter just deactivated her Facebook after a romantic breakup, so I have to go to instagram to see her photos.

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    1. Hmmm...I know an 82 year old woman who tracks her grandchildren on Instagram. Meanwhile, she barely uses Facebook. Neither do her grands. That's interesting.

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  6. I think Instagram, like all types of social media, can be used for what YOU want it to do, even if that's not what the rest of the world is using it for. Me? I use all the different social media things for different purposes.

    Facebook - for keeping up with friends and family, and a small page for my blog.
    Pinterest - for promoting my blog
    Twitter - for tracking my political interests
    Instagram - for viewing and contributing to the beauty of the world

    I don't follow many friends on Instagram. I follow feeds that regularly post beautiful garden or art photos. That's about it. I post what I hope are beautiful photos of my flowers, my world around me.

    I only started using Instagram after I got underway with Twitter. Twitter makes me mad, sometimes, because it's my political outlet. So Instagram calms me down, as my beauty outlet.

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    1. Thank you. Pinterest, right now, is my beauty outlet, but I barely post any of my own pictures on it. For me, it's more of a storage area for if I need inspiration. I love your idea of "different social media for different purposes."

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  7. I like instagram. I probably need two accounts - one for personal and one for my blog, but so far I just have one. Nature pics are great. I think people are switching to instagram because it is pictures and not politics. I will head over and follow you :) @laura_almostemptynest

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    1. I did follow you, Laura. I so need a politics free zone. If not for blogging I may have quit Facebook by now.

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  8. I had to smile, Alana at you not being too encouraged by my post. Sorry about that. I'm not too encouraged either, and I haven't made up my mind yet. So I will be watching YOUR posts with interest. Hope it goes well.

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    1. I am going to take it slowly, Shirley. I did remember your post - in fact, it may have been one of the first posts I ever read on your blog. If it doesn't go well, I'll just close the account.

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  9. I have loved Instagram for my crochet blog because I can post photos of works in progress, yarns that I love and photos for my most recent posts. I'm having more trouble finding interesting things to post for my Over 50 blog because I'm not into fashion and have no kids. So, last night I posted a photo of my hubby in the hot tub holding an umbrella (because it was raining). That's my life. LOL Good luck with your decision either way!

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    1. Crocheting blog - can you provide a link? I've crocheted for over 45 years, although I don't that much anymore. And, I have too many WIPs. Ha, maybe I can embarrass myself by putting them all out on Instagram.

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  10. I really struggle to build a following on Instagram so I've given up on it for business purposes. I absolutely love it for personal use though - seeing friends' photos and inspirational quotes, oh and photos of dogs! Lots of dogs!

    Great post

    Dani x | www.flourishingfreelancer.com

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    1. Thank you, Dani. Right now I don't have a business but I may, once I retire (whenever that may be). I appreciate you sharing your experience.

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  11. You know, I was on Instagram this past year, but lost the taste for it after a few months. I do like looking at pictures and I did like posting some of mine, but the 'rush', if you will, wasn't sustaining.

    May you enjoy it, however!

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    1. Maybe the "rush" won't last for me, either. Who knows? Thanks for commenting and sharing your experience.

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  12. Yes, I am on Instagram. I love to post my knitting and crochet. You can totally post your garden photos. That can be your thing. And your skywatch. All the pictures you post on the blog can go to Instagram with links to the blog posts if you like.

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    1. I'll have to start linking to the blog posts - thank you for the tip.

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  13. Gorgeous flowers!! Love those pics. I am not on instagram.. trying to avoid most of the (as I see it) time-consuming online apps... But see the fun in it,

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    1. Thank you. I avoided Instagram for a long time for the same reason. Only time will tell.

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  14. I'm also learning all about Instagram. I still don't know how to use it for anything other than share some pictures I've taken. But you have such lovely photos to share with the world I'm glad you're doing it through Instagram.

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    1. Thank you, bellybyes. You made me smile! I'll be sharing in Instagram little by little.

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  15. I'm a recent convert to Instagram and I actually really enjoy it. I think it's the kinder, gentler social media option with lots of amazing pictures showing all the beauty in our world. There's SPAM, commercial junk and other stuff too, but I'm learning how to tailor my feed to what I love.

    Since my blog is focused on Maine, I use it to post pictures from my hikes, restaurant visits and other adventures throughout the state. I've also been working on building a network of other people from the area so I can learn about fun things to do and I have learned some things. I occasionally push some of the pictures to my Facebook blog page, but not all of them. I do try to keep my social media for separate purposes as I think people do ultimately use them differently. I also belong to a Facebook Group, Instagram Posse, that posts tips and info about using Instagram. I have a long way to go with Instagram but I'm finding it's one of my favorites.

    I followed you on Instagram - good luck as you give it a try! WeekendsInMaine

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    1. Thank you for all this detail. I will give Instagram some attention and see what I can do with it. It's fun, right now, seeing "other sides" of some of the bloggers I have read, and people I know in person.

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  16. I do like Instagram. I use it more than FB or Twitter. :) But then, I am also trying my own challenge on there this year - Flourish Inside Out. Taking photos is fun

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    1. I enjoy taking photos, and always had (since I was at least 8).

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  17. I'm on Instagram, I don't have a smartphone so I don't post there but I enjoy seeing what other folks post. I actually joined when I started seeing some of the stuff a favorite former co-worker of mine was posting after this midwinter art fair on a frozen lake near his new home in Minneapolis - I'd never known about his photography hobby (although I do remember him having a bunch of IT folks in his office having loads of fun playing around with photoshop) but these were so gorgeous! he's in there as waqonthewildside - he's doing staircases right now, very cool.

    I'll follow you!

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    1. Thank you, Bonnie - I just followed you back.

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