Flee from them

If you have a gambling problem, then don’t go to Las Vegas even if the best show in the world is playing on the strip.

If you can’t say no to that last drink, then stay away from bars.

If you are addicted to nicotine, then don’t hang out in the smoking lounge.

If you are trying to kick caffeine, then stay away from coffee shops.

If you are addicted to the endorphin kick from social media, then delete the apps like Facebook or Instagram that suck you in. Turn off push notifications and opt out of the email. There are brilliant people at these companies whose sole job, compensation and bonuses are centered on getting you to spend more time scrolling through the feed. Sadly a lot of them could be applying that same expertise to nobler causes, but money talks and principles walk out the door.

If there are people you follow on Twitter who spew negativity, hate, and decisiveness and in the process make you feel pretty shitty then unfollow them.

Don’t try to control these vices; you need to flee from them. Keep away from the hooks, and you won’t get sucked in. Addictive vices are seductive, so to counter the gravitational pull you have to engineer your life and habits to avoid them. Associate with people that reinforce good habits and keep you on track. Sometimes the best way to beat something is to run away.

Show me your friends, and I’ll show you your future.

Instagr.am’s fatal flaw

What a pity that Instagram removed the ability to view photos within the Twitter feed. In doing so they turned the ability to quickly review a potentially crappy photo into a full blown time waster. Not every photo is relevant to me, so in a way a photo is just like a tweet … it needs to be easy to skim like 140 characters. I can then choose to engage or move on.

I view the majority of my photos via Twitter (I use Twitter way more than I use FB) and it’s a schlepp to click through into Instagram site and I’d rather not. The new Twitter photo app is painful but I’ll learn and the UI will get better. In the interim I’m using the Flickr App and might stick with it.

Hubris may end up being Instagram’s fatal flaw. My hunch is they’ve overestimated user loyalty and underestimated the power of the Twitter platform. I for one will stick with Twitter and continue to share photos that can be quickly accessed within the feed. I’m already filtering out instagr.am pic links, in favor of Twitter pics and Flickr

I get it that FB and Twitter are competing for people’s time and that Instagram is trying to become the next Twitter, but this move has inconvenienced me and pushed me away. Instagram may have miscalculated here … it’s very slick photo sharing app that hit the market at the perfect time, but it might find out that convenience trumps fancy filters.

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UPDATE: Today Instagram released a new terms of service that has alienated its loyal users. Instagram can now sell your photos to third parties for advertising without telling you. Here’s the link