The Suppression of Original Content

Boot editing accounts have thwarted original content

If you’ve been on Instagram on any amount of time, you will have probably come across repost accounts that only have pictures of “concept” boots. These are just somebody else’s photos of their boots with a filter slapped on them to make them seem unique. Not only do these accounts not give credit for the original photos they have stolen, but they’ll often just steal a photo, edit it and repost that.

What compounds this issue is the way Instagram’s algorithm is current set up. It actively rewards accounts that just repost viral content from bigger accounts. In addition, any smaller accounts that make any original content will often have their content suppressed when it comes to the explore bar.

Complete waste of time

There’s a simple reason why Instagram does this. It’s because they want smaller accounts to keep spending money to promote their pages. Any tricks or workarounds for this issue seems to be instantly squashed by the platform. It has the effect of crushing any original content and makes the platform hard to use.

We also see that see much content becomes recycled that it seems like nothing new is being produced or created. Instagram knows it can get away with this because it has no large competitors and has virtually a monopoly on social media because of the nature of the app.

But not everything can be blamed on Instagram. Turning our focus back to the “boot editing” pages, because so many have sprung up and they constantly share and reshare photos means people’s feeds and explore pages get flooded with this stuff, so they begin gathering loads of followers because of their ubiquity. Its just so…low effort. There are pages that so much time and effort to set up the perfect shot or video, only to be dwarfed by some page that used an app to “create” a “concept” colourway.

Stupid and boring, low effort

One might wonder why they do this. Part of it could be down to the human want to be popular but most is really because of money. They grow these pages in whatever way they can so that they either get some sort of sponsorship or they sell their pages to other people’s or companies. So, greed drives a lot of this behaviour.

And let’s be really clear about this: These pages add NOTHING to the boot community. They are literally a waste of time, space and bandwidth. The only thing they’ve accomplished is driving the algorithm to promote reposted content. In turn, this now means that other accounts repost viral videos or pictures in order to grow, which causes the cycle to continue. In some way, I understand where some of these pages are coming from. It’s so difficult to grow a page with just hard work these days.

The only real exceptions to this rule are Chris Pottle, who puts a lot of work into his designs and ideas. He even mentioned the specific shades of colours he uses for some of his edits and of course Josh Tosell and a few others put a lot of work into original concepts as well, so support the real creators!

Instagram could stop this, but they don’t care. This actively harms the community because eventually nothing will seem original and it will become harder and harder to grow naturally, unless you’re a big company of course. It will also cause people to become disillusioned and drop out of the community all together.

Since Instagram won’t do anything, we have to do it ourselves. It’s easy. We can all try to not share viral content so much. Its not the worse thing to share some every now and then, but let’s make sure we all do more to help each other and help ourselves by pushing more original content. And if you run one of these “concept colourway” accounts: Quit.

These accounts are garbage, that’s it.



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