The Pros And Cons Of Instagram

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Instagram is a social media platform launched in October 2010 (Instagram, 2017), which allows users to upload pictures and videos to share with others either publicly or privately. In the latter case only a selected number of followers, who have been given access from the account holder, are allowed to see the content.

As of April 2017, Instagram is believed to have approximately 700 million active users per month (Statista, 2017). Considering the widespread popularity of the platform, previous studies have investigated what the main reasons that encourage people to create an Instagram account are. Sheldon and Bryant (2015) identified positive trends that link having an Instagram account with higher levels of social activity
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The corpus has been split equally into two categories: forty samples show individuals engaging in some form of physical activity, whereas the remaining forty display individuals posing in their workout clothes. Additionally, all the posts used in the study have been selected from account holders, whose profile was set to public.

In order to minimize potential confounding variables, the selections contain at least one pair of pictures posted by the same user. Furthermore, several criteria have been established in order to avoid potential third variables in each pair. This system of classification allows for a reduction in variables that might influence the number of likes on the two types of posts, such as:
• Difference in the number of people present in the picture;
• Difference in the background (e.g. indoor and outdoor, neutral and eye-catching backgrounds);
• Difference in the number and quality of hashtags, as the reach of the post and the probability it will be viewed a larger audience are heavily dependent on the hashtags
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