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For "Likes" sake: Millennials and obsession with social media gratification.

April 24, 2017

 A few weeks ago a friend asked me to take a picture of him during a hike and of course I said yes.


10 minutes later he asked for another one with him posing next to a tree. Not my thing but I obliged to the request. Then when we approached the summit of the hike came another photo request and I groaned in annoyance and said "Can't we just do something without having to post it on social media?".


Then it struck me how intertwined millennials are with social media and broadcasting our lives to friends and family. 


I saw this trend continue while I was at The Broad museum in Downtown Los Angeles. Everywhere I turned there was selfies being taken and mini photo shoots before my eyes. 


Welcome to 2017 where no activity will go without being shared. 


Currently there are over 158 million users on Snapchat  and 150 million on Instagram which shows the numbers and power of these networks. 


So can you really blame people for sharing more than they should or posting videos of their lunch everyday. The question here is it a social media issue or a user issue?


Let's start with social media and it's mass appeal to not only millennials but the majority of people. Besides obviously being able to share and connect with others is there an underlying element that makes social media so addictive. "Likes" and boy do we love them. 


It's how a user gains instantaneous gratification from a photo post or witty comment. It's the barometer for our online presence and acceptance there. Or in other words "Should I delete this because it only has 6 likes?". 


These are truly first world problems but mean a lot to millennials who have grown up from the early days of MySpace to the "college cool" Facebook and now the ever so popular Snapchat. 


But users have a problem here as well. If we didn't post anything on our social media for 3 weeks would our friends think something is wrong or even dead ? 


I've thought about this and how absurdly our minds are wrapped around social media. 


Maybe it's time to put down the phone at the concert and take it in. No need to share the coffee you got from Starbucks. 


Start enjoying and living life without the thought of I need to get a good picture or else people won't know that I was here. 


No picture ever did justice like living the moment and enjoying it. 

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