Bowery Mural

Filter me this, Filter me that

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Ah Ha haha ha haa. Hahahahahaha ha ho hee hee. Aha oh hee ha. Aha. Ho hee haaa.
(I hope someone gets that reference. I LOVE it).

Yes, that is the sound of laughter emanating from the offices of Twitter and Facebook (nee Instagram) this past few weeks. It's the laughter that says 'we're launching a new filter and a kinda fancier UI' (Instagram). It's also the laugh that says 'oh yeah, punks! Well, we're introducing Filters. So, nah!' (Twitter).

What the laugh should represent is the laughs of despair from us, the users, because it means we are missing out a little bit. While they squabble in their millionaires playground, we users wish that we didn't have to click twice instead of just once to view our Brannan filtered sunrises (me!) when they appear in a tweet. For yes, that's all you'll see now is a link, not your lovely photos. It's something to do with Instagram and a disappearing card trick (please someone get these references before i finish this post?!), or... something  technical like that. Oh and I jest about having to click the link to see the photos. I don't get why folk are decrying this, it's what you do when you want to read an article from a link in a tweet too.
my favourite recent capture
In return our Twitter friends have totally eradicated all traces of your Instagram pictures from your profile. What you have left is those crappy pictures that appear in tweets you retweeted and you thought were funny at the time but goddamn you don't want them showing up on your profile. They're there. Gah!

Willow. No not some new movie set in a magical land where people are 2 foot tall and have scraggy hair, Willow is the new filter in Instagram. It's black and white and grey...  ...*tumbleweed* ...  ...  Yeah, that was my reaction too. It is nice, but i don't really do black n white photos.
Baubles in Willow on Instagram
It's okay though, because over on Twitter they are soon to launch new Filters. *Cue ticker tape and marching bands and funky street dancers that tumble all over the place*...  ...  ...  ...  Wait, have you seen the filters? Wow. I have an app called Camerabag on my phone. It was one of my early forays into camera trickery and while the filters are nice, it's pretty basic. That's what i think the Twitter Filters look like. That is me just viewing the pictures on their blog though so no hands on experience because lo and behold, shortly after announcing that filters were coming... some 18 hours later it's still not there in the App store. Click, refresh, click refresh, click refresh...nope, still not there. Oh how I so want that little red circle to change from 2 to the number 3 and for it to be there.

All joking aside (you got that reference yet?), I think it's a pity that two of my favourite ever social playgrounds appear to be at loggerheads. It's not a war as most people are calling it. A war involves guns and fighting and bad things happening. It's a disagreement, ultimately about money, and the making of it. Of course Instagram wants to make some more, I mean who in their right minds could live off 100 million, right? Of course Twitter wants to get rid of their once nice bedfellow after they only went and shacked up with the black sheep (FB) of the social family. Why can't they all just get along nicely? eh.

Me, well I'll still use both. At the last count i currently have 39 photo taking or photo editing apps on my phone. I love mobile photography and the wise people say, the best camera is the one you've got with you to capture that moment. I will never have too many filters in my life. The more the merrier. But what i love about Instagram is not only my beloved Amaro, XProII and Brannan filters, but the fact that people give you a little love heart when they 'like' your picture or that they can leave a comment on your picture. It's those little things that may be lost with Twitter filters. I mean we could 'star' them as favourites but then no one else would see that would they?
How you see the Likes
Instagram gives you all the pictures you want to see in your feed. Those people you have actively followed because they take the most wonderfully shot pictures with a phone. There are people who aren't necessarily on Twitter or they no longer tweet but give great Instagram. There's the brands who really excel at Instagram - Red Bull, Sharpie, Converse. It's a whole little mini social network within the wider landscape.
little like hearts and comments - love
With Twitter you get all the tweets and pictures from the folk you like to tweet and chat to, but man some of them can't take a picture to save themselves. Sorry folks. Also there's the thrill of checking your newsfeed in Instagram and seeing that X number of people liked your picture enough to 'like' it. Likes = Lovehearts *swoon*. Now don't say that doesn't bother you because evidently it does, we all want a little bit of loving, enough if it's just on the snapshots we take of our lives. Incidentally, a few weeks ago Instagram released a web platform whereby all your pics are stored and displayed in a grid format. You can also like and comments on photos there. Here's mine
ooh look, shiny shiny lovely web Instagram thingy
How will Twitter let me (and others know) when my pictures are liked? Perhaps Twitter filters are not meant to be used in that way. Perhaps they're just filters. Whatever they are i can't wait to use them too. I hope they're worth the wait. The Cinema filter looks akin to Instagram's Brannan so I'm sure it'll feature heavily in my picture tweets. Brace yourselves. I'm gonna filter the shit out of all of my photos from now on.

Oh, and that reference.... here it is Ah ha ha hahahaha ah ho hee hee. Why so serious!

Play safe, kids.

Angela x



  1. Hi, I found your blog on the uk blogging community after you commented on my post about whether or not you need a DSLR to be a blogger.

    I loved this post and I think it's something a lot of people have kind of brushed over or totally forgotten.

    Like you, I love instagram, I love it when I get the notification someone has commented or liked on a picture I've put up on there, it is it's own mini world on there.

    I'm not really keen on the Twitter filters because I never really use any Twitter apps or even the site to tweet. I always use some sort of social media client like Hootsuite which I don't think has the filters built in.

    Also like you said you don't get that same joy on there, you may get a couple of people @ you and make a comment on your picture. But twitter moves really fast and sometimes if no one catches your tweet it can get lost.

    I've had pictures I've posted on Instagram 'liked' weeks after I originally posted them.

    What I tend to do is have certain pictures I post on Instagram and others that I apply a filter to, using pixlr o matic then upload it on twitter, I don't tend to send my Instagram pictures to Twitter anymore because they're not viewable in the main Twitter timeline, unless you use a social media client.

    What are your views on that?

    BTW I've started following you on Twitter & Instagram :)

    1. Hi Arash,
      Mostly all of the pictures on this blog are iPhone pictures. Some aren't that great quality but for me it's quicker and easier. I can blog on the run then too.

      I still love Instagram and thankfully most of the people i love to follow on there are still posting pictures. I love that community over there. You can miss the pictures sometimes on Twitter but if you pop over to IG you can catch the pics.

      I actually don't mind at all that the pictures don't show up in the main twitter timeline. You only have to click a link and see them, the same thing you have to do if you want to read a news story posted as a link within a tweet. The griping about that is a non starter for me. It;s just moaning for moaning's sake.

      Thanks for the comment and the follows! :)


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