Instagram Hates The Internet

Instagram's most toxic contribution might be "Link in Bio". In order to lock you in completely, they took the fundamental defining characteristic of The Web -- the hyperlink -- and destroyed it.

This dark pattern is the logical progression of social media silos. It says: "the Product keep leaving our site! Let's make it be six clicks harder. Let's give them one link, only one. Let's display that other page inside our app instead of in a real web browser. Let's make the OS's 'share' panel even harder to use, because otherwise they might share something somewhere that we can't monetize."

Burn it all down. Burn them all down.

I would, however, like to see an act by burlesque duo, Lincoln Bio and Skip Intro.

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14 Responses:

  1. For your convenience, in resolution independent SVG: No Facebook.

  2. Jim says:

    When you can right-click to copy a Google search result URL and it's the actual URL instead of the Google tracking URL for the URL, because somehow Google doesn't know how to use onClick() on their own main search results page, then we will know that technology has been rescued from the ignorant.

  3. John says:

    Instagram's most toxic contribution might be "Link in Bio

    I'm not 14 and what is this?

    • plumpy says:

      You can't put a link in an Instagram post. So if you want people to visit a website, you add the link to your bio page and say "link in bio". Then people click on your username, go to your bio, and click the link.

      You only get one link, though, so make it a good one (and all your old posts that say "link in bio" will now be incorrect).

  4. mdhughes says:

    … Is Instagram actually a thing people try to communicate with? When it started it was some kind of selfie-sharing site. I still see photo-tumblrs point to it sometimes, mostly porn, but never seen anyone post any content (dumb word but: text, literature, even a slogan with a tiny bit of thought to it). They could just have a blog or a tumblr or fediverse account or something and post actual links.

    — Grampa Simpson, signing off.

    • jwz says:

      Yes. It's selfies and sandwiches, but a ton of artists post their work there too. Think of Instagram as "what if Flickr but without any features".

      (Which I guess is a good description of what Tumblr was too, except Tumblr allowed posts without images in them.)

      But yeah, they could be using something that's less popular and more difficult instead. They could be doing that, for sure.

  5. Derpatron9000 says:

    > Burn it all down. Burn them all down.

  6. Steve Smith says:

    It's even worse than those websites that give you an intermediate "warning" page when you click on a link - "Warning! You are leaving this site!". Steam does this IIRC, among many others.

  7. hellpé says:

    I assume that by "Skip intro", you're not talking about the Netflix feature, are you? "Link in bio" is indeed horrible but I'm not sure what "Skip intro" is about.

    (vaguely related: I've tried to set up a Pixelfed account in order to get rid of Instagram but I would like to import my old photos from IG with the posting date and everything, did someone actually managed to do that?)

  8. Lloud says:

    Do you have a locking briefcase? link in bio.

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