We need to talk about men who have Instagram
I cannot believe I even have to say this
There is something deeply sinister going on on Instagram right now. And it’s not those fake accounts you can pay to increase your followers. It’s not the fact that enough people don’t like my cute pictures of me and my dog. It’s not even their bizarre anti-nipple schtick.
It’s men who use Instagram.
There are certain types of people who you can imagine embodying a social network. Any of them, they all have an archetypal, normal, user. Close your eyes and picture a mouth-breathing Reddit shitposter, a glass-half-full-of-sauvignon on a Tuesday afternoon Facebook mum, a PSL basic tweaking their mood board on Pinterest. And then Instagram.
I don’t know about you, but when I imagine Instagram I imagine pastels, pictures of dogs, leaves on the ground, squad selfies of happy sisters with excellent filters.
It’s the place where you present the best version of yourself. And it is being absolutely ruined by fuckboys.
When examining the Instagram fuckboy, it’s important not to cause offence, and not to tar them all with the same brush. There are layers and degrees of sinister Instagram behaviour, but, you know what I mean, there’s just something about it.
First and foremost, there is the standard commenter fuckboy. Go on any female celebrities Insta right now. Go on, scroll through the comments on any Nicki Minaj selfie. “Hope that ring is just for show : ) u not getting married… please dot nt that F… @#$%”UI” says one. A guy called Harry interjects “My friend showed me this photo and I wanted to spit”. They’re there, inevitably, lurking in the shadows, spoiling the aesthetic on King Kylie’s interior design posts.
It’s the worst type of not reading a social situation. Who even comments in that depth on Instagram? Why would you bother? There are emojis and a like button for that. You are getting it wrong. The obnoxious commenter kind of fuckboy is overt and ubiquitous, but they’re not even the creepiest. Literally, I can’t believe I even have to explain.
Perhaps the strangest thing are the boys who use Instagram in a totally chill and ordinary way. Like, it’s just a normal thing, and they’re welcome to it, and that’s not creepy. Like, I know. You don’t even have to scroll deep into their Instas to uncover totally unselfconscious squad pics of them “and the boys” at the rugby. Of a holiday in Croatia where they’re looking windswept on a boat and the filter I swear to God is always just something just a little bit off like they do not even know when to use Valencia.
Then there are of course, the selfies. Squinting just a little out of shot even though the sun is not even that bright, lips slightly parted, shoulders always awkwardly hunched, a selfie from a boy is one of the most bizarre and off-putting things you can see on Insta.
Trust – I’m partial to a stalk. But like any normal functioning semi-adult, I do it on Facebook, where I can see you looking average to best, as close to the real living breathing world as you’ll get. On Instagram, there is something inherently sinister about creeping a boy.
What if I accidentally like that artsy shot of a building 54 weeks in because apparently you’re also a very masculine “photography blog” for no reason whatsoever? Do you get the notification from your lair as you tell the captive to put the lotion on its skin or else it gets the hose again? What are we?
I’m glad we’ve had this talk.