The massiveness of exhibitionism: in social networks
Author: Jorge E. Mújica | Source: A&A
We were on the final days of October 2015 when a young Instagram celebrity, Australian Essena O´Neill, come through with the truth: behind every picture she posted was a story of addiction and deception: “I´ve taken 50 photos until I manage to take one that you might like, and I have taken a lot of time editing this selfie with a bunch of apps just to feel socially acceptable by you”, she wrote on the picture.
That wasn´t her real life, and that why she announced her decision to leave Instagram and her YouTube account, even though many pictures gave her between 365-1,300 euros. Brands searched for her because her photos were “natural” and can promote their products, she published those images for her more than 700 thousand followers: “To be realistic, I´ve been most of my life addicted to social network, social approval, status quo and my physical appearance. I was consumed by it. How can we notice our own skills if we keep focusing on the others?” that was one of her last post.
Essena story, it not a one in a million case, it´s just a reflection of a daily reality of hundreds of teenagers on Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook, they publish most of their “real” life but this doesn´t represent their lives at all. This has come viral, it´s a massive tendency, this means that people are rejecting privacy by posting every single thing they do. This phenomenon has resulted in a pathologic conduct since the moment a person becomes addict to the feeling this social media gives “likes”, “comments” “retweets”, etc. It becomes from a simple post to people thinking you are interested for the people that posts something. This makes you build a character based on an image that you want to show) with the help of apps for retouching and editing).
The phenomenon of exhibitionism exceeds the nubile age and extends its comprehensive ratio to people in higher stages of life, believing that everything that exists must be published (with the hidden interest of a digital touch turned into "like" or craved time of three minutes of addictive relevance always seeking for more). Isn´t there at the bottom of this, human longing to be valued, be important for someone? The search for esteem is a desire in the bottom of the human heart. The appreciation begins with the own heart: What´s the point in taking a million photos to achieve one, that doesn´t match your personality? In the end humans don´t fall in love with photos, people fall in love with words, characters, and personality. And this isn´t achieve by having thousands of followers. Isn´t this a time to think so things can become from fake to real? Does someone really think that you can live a life based on digital reactions?
Someone has discover that you can live without posting everything. And there are the ones that discovered that life is the thing that passes when you´re looking your smartphone.