By AnnaGrace Hale | Sports Writer
As a military kid, I’ve moved around a lot. Keeping up with old friends from all over the country and around the world has proven to be challenging. However, social media has been a great tool to allow me to keep in touch with all these people despite being miles apart. That being said, I’ve used a lot of apps to stay connected with friends: Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter. However, one that is my favorite, and that has changed the social media game, is BeReal — but only if it’s used properly.
BeReal tops all other forms of social media because it tries to eliminate the pressure to convey your life as perfect. Unlike Instagram and Snapchat, it’s unfiltered and unedited; as the name implies, it tries to make users be real.
Once a day, the app sends a notification giving each person two minutes to take a photo. Ideally, the user will take a photo of whatever they are doing in that moment and post it. You then share the photo — which is a selfie and a back camera picture taken simultaneously — with your friends, who can comment or react.
Honestly, BeReal is exposing, and maybe that’s why it’s great. It’s an attempt to reframe how we think of social media and allows users to see that everyone is in the same boat. For example, the majority of college students post pictures of them studying or in bed each day. The app highlights the mundane things in life.
It eliminates the trap of mindless scrolling and the chain of like counts that Instagram seems to encourage. It removes the pressure of perfection because it promotes the idea that no one’s life is perfect.
So, yes, the idea is great. You get to see what people are up to in the moment. However, a trend I’m starting to see as the app is gaining popularity is people posting pictures late. This is not because they missed the notification, but because they are choosing to wait to post a picture until they are doing something more interesting.
This defeats the purpose. People like this are falling back into the trap that BeReal is specifically trying to break free from.
Your social media presence doesn’t have to be perfect. You don’t have to be doing something interesting all the time or portray yourself to be having more fun than you actually are. If that were the point of the app, it would be called Instagram.
As an avid BeReal user, I ask others to please maintain the integrity of this app. Don’t ruin it for other people by promoting your life in a fake way; just be real.