Instagram Sucks …Favorite us on Instagram

Everyone, business or personal account alike, is being crushed by the IG algorithm. Is it time to give up?

I hope you read and respond to the thoughts below. But before we give up entirely on IG we are asking people to “Favorite” us in the app so you see our posts. We post 5-6 images a week, so we aren’t going to take over your feed. And how could we anyway given all the paid ads and “suggested” posts!

How to “Favorite” someone (like Sweet Maria’s!) on Instagram.

Remember the Instagram where you could see posts from people you followed, in the order they were posted?

Yes, it was ages ago and a distant memory at this point. But it seems worthwhile to remember a time when an app actually did what you wanted it to do, what you signed up for!

I’ve heard it described this way. Imagine if your phone is a swiss army knife multi-tool. You carry it to serve a purpose, to take it out and use it when needed. The apps and other core functions are the individual blades or implements. (By the way, what about that plastic toothpick in the swiss army knife – kinda odd!)

So now imagine the devices we have been carrying around with us the last 5-8 years. yes, we answer a call, respond to a text. Great. But the apps in particular are so functionally degraded, because their purpose now is more to distract and divert than be useful.

What kind a tool is it when you pick it up for a specific purpose, and it is engineered to not work for that purpose, or makes you do extra work to use for your intended purpose. What if you go to the garage and get a screwdriver, but find you came back with a hammer.

Ok, not a perfect analogy, but consider going to Instagram because you wonder what a friend you used to follow has been up to, and imagine trying to find their last post by scrolling down! I used to be able to do that! Now i would have to purposefully defeat what the app wants to show me to accomplish my goal – I have to go search them out, and see a bunch of other crap IG wants to show me in doing so.

I find myself successfully “defeated” by my phone all the time. I pick it up to do something, click here and there, and a few clicks later I cannot remember what I picked it up for. I blame myself, my lack of focus, distractibility, latent adhd etc etc.

But shouldn’t we blame really bad tools that want to subvert our intentions? Shouldn’t we blame apps and software that by design wants to do this to us? When I feel like its me, my shortcoming, I realize that I am also saying I deserve no better than to be treated like crap by Instagram/Facebook.

I know this is not at all a unique complaint and not stated as eloquently as others have said it. And I know the response many would have is … well nowadays you just have to develop skills to filter and navigate and use your devices effectively so they serve you, not vise versa. True, but I also find this response takes on responsibility that it shouldn’t. The fact is, technology users do not have the protections we need in a social sphere that is owned by private interests who serve their own purposes, not ours.

As Sweet Maria’s, I really don’t know what we should do at this point! Out strategy has been to invest time and thought into our own site, where we can control the terms and the tone. That means spending more time focused on long-form writing, video , photo etc … (you know, the stuff really popular on tiktok etc. Ha Ha. )

It means focusing on our cart site, improving descriptions and photos, and on this, our Library site. Even if few people really use our Coffee Library to its full extent ( there is soooo much info here!) I would rather have 10 people browsing this high quality information verus 10 people clicking LIKE on a facebook photo.

So yeah, we are not the hippest or most savvy in the apps. And we have to keep one toe in the water just to be in touch, but I would rather be this anachronistic and out-of-touch Sweet Maria’s, than any other.

One Response

  1. Just wanted to say I’m happy to be one of the 10 people browsing your high quality information site, that is the Sweet Maria’s Library! Where’s the button to like this post, hahaha. Tech stuff gives me amnesia, too, or I call it goldfish brain. A downgrade for sure. Not helpful. Social media algorithms are only able to feed themselves with lousy and primitive human reactions because all they can do is figure out how soon you click something or how soon you click away, that’s the nice way of saying flight or flight syndrome. If they were fed with insightful information; well, that’s more or less what people have always done and we already have those. If you want to check up on an old friend you might have to call them, or, better yet, meet up for coffee 🙂

    Flight or flight is founded on adrenaline, which is short-lived. Sweet Maria’s is founded on Maria? Aka love? Which is not short-lived. So how do you reconcile the short-lived within the context of happily ever after, or in other words, how does Sweet Maria’s do Instagram? Ay, there’s the rub. This paradox has probably troubled man since man has been man. But man is not alone. Or at least John Donne said something that sounded good and had to do with man and islands.

    Anyway, Jaron Lanier’s longform writings (books) are probably the most erudite on this subject. You Are Not a Gadget is his first and a good place to start. From it you’ll get how unspectacular the non-organic (tech) world is, and how all of its positive attributes, if there are any, rely on the organic world (peoples).

    *Typed while drinking home roast of your 2022 Kenya Ichamama AA.

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