The Dangers of “Doing it for the Gram”

According to Urban Dictionary, doing something “For the Gram” is when you do something for the sole purpose of seeking attention on social media. Is doing something for attention on social media a way to gain new unique experiences, or does it create a harmful precedent for people just trying to live their modest lives? 

You can purchase this shirt on Etsy to satisfy all of your influencer needs.

The Good

Doing it for the gram can allow people to share experiences that they wouldn’t otherwise share. Caitlin Fladager posted a photo of herself sharing the difference between what she looks like on her best day versus an average one. This inspired young users of Instagram that everything is not as it seems and an image might not capture the realities of a moment. 

On a more personal note, I have had a great time with my friends doing something just to post on social media. Like dancing for a TikTok or shining my phone’s flashlight to get the perfect lighting for an Instagram photo. In those cases, doing it for the gram can be a fun way to try new things or bond with your friends for entertainment. 

The Bad 

Outside applications like Facetune spark debate on social media about photoshopping your body to make yourself look perfect for attention online. Vox puts it best when they say that it is an endless pursuit for perfection. Once you make one post that changes your body to look unnatural, you have to consistently follow those regulations for your posts so people don’t realize that it is fake. 

There is a point to be made for the fact that models in magazines and advertisements are also photoshopped constantly, so what makes your influence on social media any different from that? I wonder if there is a place we can reach as a society where we are either completely natural or completely photoshopped to limit the judgment that people receive for choices they make regarding their outward image. 

The Ugly

When I think of the harm that Instagram causes, I usually go straight to body image issues and class-based judgment. Little did I know, there are real-life dangers to full sends on Instagram. Influencer Katarina Elle Zarutskie got bit by a live Shark while trying to pose for the perfect Instagram photo in a pool of sharks. She defended herself by saying “I’ve seen countless photos of people with them on Instagram”. This demonstrates a fairly apparent lack of judgment, just so that she could impress her peers on Instagram. 

Is doing it for the gram a way to express creativity, or does it create a toxic ideology of what your life should be like?

Twitter: Have you ever done something out of your comfort zone just for a “like” or to up your followers? Learn more about the good and bad of our attention seeking here:

Facebook: Instagram has become a platform for people to share their experiences, whether it be travelling, selfies or hanging out with friends. Learn more about the dark sides of what it means to “do it for the gram” by checking out my latest blog post:

“Ok Boomer” and The Generational Divide in Social Media

Everywhere I turn on social media there is a millennial or someone in Generation Z calling out a Baby boomer for their intolerance and ignorance of new ideas. 

The Meme

“Ok Boomer” has rapidly become the most used trend in my social circles after it’s rise on the app TikTok. Between the Climate March led by 16-year-old Greta Thunberg, issues around job security and affordability, it makes sense that our older generations should take some of the blame for the anxiety that younger generations face. The trend of call out culture has resulted in actions in attempt to bring the meme into the “real world”.

The joke went as far as the creation of a song on Soundcloud deeming that the war on millennials is over, and that’s just the beginning.

Ok Boomer has become so popular that people are making money off of merchandise. (Source)

Chlöe Swarbrick, a 25-year-old member of the New Zealand Parliament even gave a speech supporting a climate crisis bill and was heckled by an older colleague. Her quick response of “Ok Boomer” caused upset across social media platforms. Leading to her response on Facebook defending her comment as witty and in good humour.

This got me thinking. In a world where social media is accessible to so many people, how does this type of meme make such an influential rise without being shut down by Boomers? 

The Facts 

In January of 2019, 67% of Canadians who have internet access chose to use a social media platform. Younger generations grew up using social media to connect with their friends, find out what their interests are and find their first job. It is an engrained part of their worldview. For Baby Boomers, that isn’t the case.

A company called O.M.E. Gear found that baby boomers use their social media to stay in touch with their loved ones, whereas Gen Z and Millenials use it to document and share their adventures. Gen X and Z users are also trying to intake as much content as possible. Even though they aren’t types to deep-dive into content, they are more engaged in what they do see. Whereas Boomers will read your cousin Stephanie’s Facebook post about her high school graduation 3 times and encourage their friends to do the same.

It makes sense that an application like Tik Tok with 30-second videos with jokes and dances from strangers would not be the place for Boomer’s to get their fix of reconnecting with their loved ones. That must be why even though Boomers are on social networks, they just aren’t on the ones where trends can rise quickly through the connectivity of people you’ve never actually met. 

What’s Next?

Maybe it’s the fact that younger generations don’t have the patience to pay close enough attention to what the Baby Boomers did right to have civil discourse, or maybe it’s just that they’re fed up with the hatred millennials have been getting for years that caused this backlash. 

Either way, the most exciting part about social media trends is that they’re unpredictable. It is hard to believe that the next generation will have a completely different set of apps, devices, and things to complain about due to our lack of action on certain issues. 

Calling out people for their intolerance is a lot easier nowadays that we can do it behind screens anonymously. 

Is it the healthiest way to have productive discussions about the future of the planet? Probably not. Does it give a launching pad to ensuring that our future is more accepting and environmentally conscious? Probably. 

Is it hilarious? Yes, that I know for sure. 

Here’s some bonus “Ok Boomer” content to suit all your needs when you’re angry at the world: 

Tik Tok Compilation 

Baby Boomer Culture Tweets

Twitter: Millennials and Generation Z are fed up with intolerant and archaic views. #OkBoomer is the a lens into the generational divide in social media and demonstrates the power of young people.

Facebook: How can something like “Ok Boomer” become the most popular (and offensive) internet trend overnight? Learn more about the rise of Millennials and Generation Z through social media.