From pictures to posts

The Spread image 3
Courtesy of Neha Vagadia

By Neha Vagadia 

Three weeks ago, while I was packing up for college, I stumbled upon two big boxes filled with old photo albums that contained pictures of mine and most of my two older brothers’ childhood. I had completely forgotten that I had placed these boxes at the back of my closet about eight years ago when we moved into my current home.

Without hesitation, I picked up the albums one by one and traveled to my childhood world. When I finally put down the last album, two hours had passed. To some people, these were just photos, but for me, they wereall my memories. I was overwhelmed by appreciation for them, and for the people who took time to capture these moments – my parents. 

Discovering these albums heightened my curiosity for the potential of more memories hidden within the realms of an album sky-rocked. So, I went on an almost desperate search for more albums around my house.

But to my disappointment, I found none.

When I was younger, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram didn’t exist. My parents never “posted” pictures of their kids with cheesy little captions, in hopes of receiving more than 20 likes or comments suggesting how cute we were.

No. They took pictures, printed them out, and made an album for their own pleasure and to make tangible memories. However, few years ago, my parents caught the Facebook fever, and there went the albums.

After finding those albums, I realized that social media websites fuel the reasons behind a lot of the things we do. A very good example of this is taking pictures. I cannot count how many times I’ve heard the phrase “OMG! I love that picture! Make sure you put it on Facebook!” I myself have said this many times.

Why do we want that picture to be posted so bad?

For memories’ sake definitely, but more importantly, we want others to see.

Majority of us would be lying if we said we made a Facebook account solely for the purpose of having some kind of online album. To some extent, this may be true. However, there are a lot of other more relevant reasons as to why people make an account. I am certain that the number of friends you want on Facebook crossed your mind at least once while making an account. When you posted that first picture, you probably logged in multiple times a day to check how many likes you got and from whom.

I know I did.

I hate to admit it, but Facebook and all the other social media websites are now a really big part of my life. I have realized that this might not be a bad thing after all. These social media websites have helped me reconnect with my friends and family from Kenya and others who are all around the world. They are up to date with what is going on in my life, and I am aware of how they are doing as well. It is almost as if we are still living in one city, one big online city.

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