Social Media, it’s all the same

Throughout the years social media has gotten the best of us. We went from using them for just knowing how our friends and family were doing to being able to be famous because of it and even making a living out of the platforms. Each of the main social media platforms – Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Tiktok – started with a specific purpose, but  today, those apps feel the same for me. 

They all have similar features and serve one single purpose. For example, they all seem to have stories, reels, comment sections, and the same algorithm, which means that the recommended videos you get on tiktok, you will also see on insta. Facebook and snapchat. Stories are something where you post a picture or short video for your friends or followers to see for 24 hours and afterwards they’re deleted permanently. Reels, Tik Tok videos, spotlights, and video feed are all different names for the same concept that the apps have in which you post a video  – a small vlog, a dance, lip syncing –  with a background sound.. Within those videos there is a “like” button and comment section which all of the previous apps have too. With all these different pieces you can start to see how all the platforms feel as one.

In a recent survey of over 400+ responses from students and teachers, 42% said that they felt like these social media do not feel the same.  Some mentioned that they all served a purpose, for example English teacher Monique Rose said, “ Tik Tok is about making and editing videos that are supposed to be relatable and supposed to make people laugh. Snapchat is solely to capture videos and photos and to get some type of reaction from friends that you have on Snapchat. Instagram is similar to these other social media apps, except the pictures and videos posted on your feed and/or story can be viewed longer than 24 hours. Facebook is more about connecting with friends and family that you don’t see as often.”  

On the other hand 58% of them agreed that the apps provided the same experience. Marco Nunez said, “I feel that for the most part they are all relatively the same now. All of them offer the basic functions of texting and stories/short videos. The only thing that’s different is pretty much the layout of the apps at this point.” I agree they are pretty much the same app with different colors and buttons. 

It baffled me once I saw that instagram included the “Reels” because I immediately saw the resemblance to the tiktok layouts. Where it was videos, swiping up or down, liking and commenting. I sometimes watched TikTok videos or so I thought I was. All of the sudden it was Reels the whole time. Now it might not seem annoying or like a problem, the thing is that due to the fact that I can’ t tell what I’m watching or what app I am on, my phone gets burned down. As in I get bored because I see the same videos over and over. I get the same content throughout the “different” apps. So that is my concern and my problem. 

Sadly to this point the social media is just plain and boring. Whenever I try to surf through the web. I just end up using TikTok most of the time. When I go to Instagram, I see recycled content with the TikTok watermark and when I go to the other two apps the same thing happens.

Maybe to be able to cure my/our boredom, the apps should take some of their features off and leave them exclusive for the other apps only.  They should not try copying each other because that’s what makes me want to use them less. The worst part of it is that they can’t add anything new to their platforms because they already have pretty much everything that is a social media app down. Sadly, all that’s left is a repetitive experience with a bunch of TikTok clones. I think I’ll just stick with the original and hope the other platforms realize being different is okay.