In attempting to stage person-to-person relationships and other everyday activities, today’s “psychological corporations” must provide a user experience that is better than or at least sufficiently different from the alternative, whether it’s another social media platform or face-to-face interaction. And they seem to be succeeding. We voluntarily export more of our psychological experience to their platforms — not only our attention, but our social lives, our creative endeavors, our emotional ups and downs.
thoughts while coming back to instagram after months of deactivation...
-on instagram, my brain inherently gets stuck on the process of cohesively conveying ""myself"" via aesthetics, tastes, experiences (tangible, digestible things) to an audience. (a constant hum of: to share or not to share). who do i want to be online (not only today but across time)? without it, i didn't remotely think about distilling components of life into something engaging or appealing.
-generally paid less attention to my own self-narrativization and the story of who i tell myself i am. now i feel less eager to attempt to convey myself and be seen, grasp-able, understood emotionally by others online.
(+ privacy is of greater value to me than it was before. i thought i was being "vulnerable" before by sharing intimate parts of myself but now i'm not so sure. instagram isn't the medium for that. it feels so insincere)
-without the underlying pressure of beholding myself to an audience, i felt less concerned with myself/identity formation in general. a broader version of existence. more... amorphous. dynamic. able to dissolve, evolve, and simply less constrained and defined, without reminders from the past... not having constant visuals indicating (and again, narrativizing,) progression or evolution is liberating.
-and with this -- i think that holding onto the (visual) past in the way that social media, particularly instagram, inherently enforces through its design is unnatural to our brains / disruptive to the present. reliant on self-surveillance and documentation. what is the cost of being so constantly reminded of / tied to our visual past? constraining, exacerbates anxiety.
-never before has humanity's (or any species) existence been so photographed, so personalized, so library-tized. feeds into broader atomization and hyper-individualization. main character syndrome lol
Incessant notifications are not the future. A connected mind is not a distracted mind. We need to design software that calms and strengthens.