Is social media relevant?
Updated: Jan 16, 2022
This is a topic that can be very controversial, but again, I only want to express my opinions and beliefs on the matter, and how it relates to get less or more gigs with photography. I will only discuss Facebook and Instagram, since those are the two that I've used in the past. I've been on Facebook for….I don't know, probably more than 15 years and I've been away from it for more than three years now and I can tell you right off the bat that the quality of my life hasn't suffered, if anything - improved. Photography? Personally for me it's a bit difficult to measure, but I feel like nothing has changed and again, if anything, things actually might even be better now, but I don't believe that it has anything to do with Fb, but rather with me learning the craft better. I believe, or I would like to believe that in the early stages of Fb, the idea of it was pure and meant well, but as people we like to corrupt things and make good things go bad. Remember nuclear energy? Anyway, Fb is a brilliant example of that. Look what it has become today. It's an absolute mess. My biggest gripe with it is that it works like a bullshit magnet. So many fake news, so many fake profiles, networks of them. People abusing the freedom of speech. The fact that you have the right to say something, doesn't mean you have to. This also ties together with me not wanting to see people I know, talking complete rubbish, because I want to believe that they still have integrity and not watch how they throw it away in the realms of the virtual world and the false sense of anonymity and security. There is no such thing and I'm pretty sure by now we can all agree on that. Alright, you get my point. Back to the photography side of things. I had a photography page attached to my personal account. I had been thinking of leaving the platform for some years and finally did. I was hesitant for a long time, because I didn't want to lose the photo page, but to be honest, I don't think it ever helped me get more gigs. You'd think that it'd be useful to showcase your work, but is it? I want to make one thing clear, I am not doing photography full time, so for me it's not a life or death issue if no one looks at my Fb photo page. Since most of my work is done in the field of portrait photography, the best advertising I can get is when people put my website by their portrait that I've shot for them. Simple as that. Yes, I have a website. If you don't, you might not find leaving Fb such a good idea, because that might leave you in a tight spot. I love having a website. To me it seems like sending a message that you're serious about what you do, even if like me, not full time. Also, you have full control of what content you show and you can present it in any way you like. Direct the viewer where you want them, not where Fb thinks you want. By having only the website, I can put all my attention into that and not focus on some other page. In my sites analytics I can see that most of the sites traffic comes from Fb, so I guess I'm doing something right :) Similar with Instagram. I only used it for maybe 2 years or so. I quickly realized that making quality posts takes time and then you have to interact with the content there, just so the algorithm would think that you are worthy and push your content higher up the food chain. It's like a game, a game that takes too much time out of my day and fragments my attention even further and makes money for someone else. No need for that. Again, back to focusing on one element which is my website. Is my website itself a work of art, not at all, because all I need and want is to lay out my photos in a way that is easily accessible and intuitive to find. Now, I will say that everyone should evaluate their circumstances, because it will depend on where you live in the world and what's the market like. I'm not on Facebook, but my work still is and will be. Amen.