STAFF POLL: Insta-Peeves

Tis the era of Instagram. Uploading, filtering, liking, hashtagging, commenting, re-sharing, it’s all a part of the fun. And although 100 million people use Instagram today, we can’t really be sure of how, why, when, and what they do with it.

We conducted a survey, a small sampling, if you will, among our coworkers here at Pulp&Fiber. We understand the function of Instagram, but we wanted to know more about what makes content rich? What makes users tick? What makes users talk? We know that there are millions of registered users, but how many of these users are actually using it?

We requested that 25 colleagues, selected at random, fill out an anonymous online survey, wherein they were asked a series of questions about the social platform.  We asked about their usage, their Insta-peeves (the things that really annoyed them about Instagram, or Instagram users), and the number of times they check Instagram, versus the number of times they actually uploaded images for sharing.

Our findings (wow, this sounds so scientific!) were very interesting. Of course, you can’t tell much about a global platform just by polling a group of 25 programmers, designers, account executives, and strategists, all working in the same office. However, if people buy the toothpaste that only four out of five dentists recommend, our” study” has to count for something, too. Right?

First, we focused on usage. In our research, we discovered that many of the people in our agency are what we like to call “Selfish Users” – this means that they take more than they give when it comes to content. While 44% say that they look at Instagram more than four times per day, the number of people that actually post four or more times a day was only 8%.  In fact, the majority of the subjects polled said they only upload a photo once a week on average, and 12% actually admitted that although they have accounts, and check their feeds often, they have never uploaded anything. Ever. Like, never. Now that’s selfish. It’s like going to a potluck empty handed. How rude.

Then, we focused on content. We asked which types of photos they are most likely to “like” on Instagram. Tied for first place at 28% were photos of friends or people they actually knew (so, like, NOT Kate Moss and Johnny Depp in 1997, because we know you DID NOT take that photo), and photos of inanimate “things” like buildings, bikes, flowers, shoes, and so on. Coming in second, at 16%, was photos of dogs. So, to anyone who follows me on Instagram… you’re welcome.

When we asked which types of photos they are most likely to “dislike” on Instagram, selfies (photos taken of oneself, by oneself) ranked number one at an impressive 40%, followed by food photos, and then manicure photos.

However, the real insights came to light when analyzing the information left in the comment boxes. Here, all subjects were invited to specifically list what their Insta-peeves were. And that’s when it got real.

One subject said, “I hate when people use 30 hashtags, 29 of which have nothing to do with the image. Also, I hate when people use tags like #instamood, #instacool, #instahub #getatmylevel.” Another subject, who apparently isn’t a fan of architecture, said, “I hate when Torontonians put up multiple photos of the CN tower. We know you’re in Toronto. You live here. I live here. You don’t need to remind us every four days.” Also listed were “duck face kissy photos”, “unfiltered photos”, “screengrabs”, and, who can forget “people who upload pictures of lyrics at karaoke parties.” That last one was a touch specific, but we did tell them to be honest.

What are your Insta-peeves? Let us know in the comments below!


  • Karaoke Pete

    Ha. Karaoke parties.

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