In a world where technology and social media are so prevalent in the lives of nearly every generation today, it is extremely challenging to decipher our lives online compared to that of reality. Platforms of communication are used to promote false identities of their users and contribute to some of the many mental health and social issues teenage and younger children experience. One of the most relevant social media apps that allow for one to make numerous accounts is Instagram, and the idea of a “Rinsta” and a “Finsta.” For those who are unaware, “Rinsta” stands for “real Instagram,” compared to a Finsta, which stands for “fake Instagram.” 

By definition of students, the real Instagram is the one in which the account user posts valuable pictures worth seeing, while the fake Instagram is a joke between friends that allows for people to share their emotions, funny stories, or what they are really doing on a daily basis. The so-called “real Instagram” is the glorified and most often times inaccurate account that allows people to share images of their lives making it look all so perfect. The fake Instagram often has a lower following count, especially compared to that of the other. It typically displays the unfiltered, sometimes even candid pictures of the user. People who utilize such accounts often make them private, reason being, they do not want the people who follow their “Rinsta” to see what goes on behind the scenes.

This seems to be a recurring theme of our generation. Inexplicit feelings, pictures, and emotions posted all over the web for everyone who pays attention to see. It’s sometimes hard to see the truth behind the “real Instagram,” to see who they really are. Why has this become the norm and how did we get here?

Insight on what a “finsta” is and how technology has shaped our culture, and how culture has shaped our technology. Video taken by Chelsea Evans.

When asked why people use social media, most often I was told that it is a great way for people to stay in contact, and stay updated with the lives of those we care about. So then, why are we posting pictures and sharing parts of our lives that are not reality? In this day and age, unfortunately, people constantly strive for perfection and approval of peers. Instagram and so many other apps encourage these attitudes toward life. We are at risk of becoming a product of social media, rather than our own unique person.

Questioning “Rinsta” and “Finsta” is a good start, but we should also be looking into ourselves and the numerous platforms we utilize, how it may be affecting our lives and others more than we think. 

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