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Facebook is a great site for keeping friends and family in-the-know. Whether you’re announcing major life events, telling everyone about the most hilarious moment of the day, or sharing your first born child’s milestones, all your FB friends can stay in the loop at the click of a button.
Sometimes the less important and borderline annoying to downright irritating status updates roll across everyone’s newsfeed from time to time. Let’s face it. No one needs to know (or cares) that a high school classmate ate spaghetti at home for supper or that their scary little poodle got its nineteenth haircut this year and is now donning a super cute pink polka-dotted hair bow with totally matches its super cute pink claws.
Luckily, we can unfriend those people if we choose. But, if it’s grandma or our 15-year-old nephew’s updates that are driving us insane, we can “hide” their updates without them knowing. It’s going to be very awkward next time we see grandma if we aren’t totally aware of her posts, and we’re going to look like real jerks if we miss out our nephew’s amazing homerun yesterday.
If you don’t want to be one of these unfriended or hidden people, you better pay close attention to your photo uploads too. Pssst- Sweet old Grandma and the home-run-hitting nephew could probably use this advice too.
#1: Stop it with the duck-face selfies already!
Let’s think about it. You’ve puckered up your lips, tilted your head to the side, stared up at the camera, arranged one hand to give the peace sign (or whatever), and somehow managed to snap a shot on your camera phone while most likely standing in your own bathroom. Nine times out of ten, I bet your dirty clothes are strewn somewhere in the background. Super cute? I don’t think so. I think you might need to get yourself checked out for some sort of odd disorder.
#2: Not everything your little bundle of love is adorable beyond belief.
Learning to crawl, first steps, and a birthday cake covered baby face are things pretty much everyone wants to see. Even a few pureed pea and sweet potato face pics are super cute. And big all-over-baby grins, lay them on us! Please, please use restraint though when the urge hits to instantly share every waking moment of your sweet little bundle of joy’s life. General rule of thumb: If your baby is gleaming with heart melting joy, or doing something that makes the viewer so giddy that they themselves make ridiculous and embarrassing noises in front of their computer screen, post away! Watch your friend count go down if you even think about posting ten more pictures of that baby sitting in its swing in the same outfit with that blank look on its face.
#3: Just because you took 150 photos of something cool doesn’t mean you have to post all of them.
One really good photo may be mixed into the entire album of shots, but no one is going to see it if they have to click through forty to get to it. Chances are they will see a couple, lose interest, and if they’re nice, they’ll leave a comment on the album as a whole instead of an individual photo, or just politely “like” the album. Narrow your photos down to the most representational, thought-provoking, expressive, and beautiful ones, and you’ll be sure to stir some appreciation among your friends.
#4: You love your dog, and everyone else should too.
The first thing everyone hopes for when they login to FB is that hopefully waiting on them is their daily photo allowance of their former coworker’s beagle laying on a couch or touching its nose to the camera lens. Not! To their human companions, dogs are amazingly sensitive, humorous, emotional beings. Unfortunately, these traits don’t usually come across in snapshots. You can’t pet or cuddle a photo, and after seeing a hundred photos of a couch potato dog, the viewer is more likely to think that you don’t just love your dog, but that your dog is extremely lazy and you might need to get out more.
#5: Can you smell how delicious my dinner looks?
Your dinner just arrived. It looks wonderful and you can’t wait to sink your teeth into it. Not until after you snap a photo a share it to the world, right? Food photography is challenging to some of the most seasoned photographers, and most of the time, even with artsy Instagram filters, it just doesn’t look as good as it does in person when you’re starving. So if you’ve made an amazing meal with fresh food out of your own garden, Uncle Joe is serving up his world famous BBQ ribs, or the food you are about to endure is going to be a spectacular feat (not feast), the share, share, share. If you microwaved some soup and arranged it with some plain toast, use some restraint before releasing its image to the world.
#6: Who are those people?
You’re super popular and you had an amazing time recently with a group of people, according to your latest photo upload. I’m one of your closest friends in the world, so why don’t I know any of them? Or what you’re doing? While it’s not all that important to tag all the faces in your photos, your FB friends do want to know what all the fun is in your group pictures. Be courteous, add a caption. That way they won’t feel like you’ve abandoned them as a friend and you’re rubbing it in their face now. It could be as simple as, “Office pizza party! Yeah!”
#7: Focus your love.
Blurred faces in photos are horrible. Even though you love the subject of the photo, and you’re having a great time, refrain from posting a blurred or grainy photo until you take a better one.
#8: You must be a professional photographer. That’s what the gigantic watermark and signature on every photo means, right?
It’s great to take pride in your photographs. To think that your semi-pro or edgy-amateur photos are at risk of being stolen and used for mega riches is a bit over the top. If you do employ safeguards, do so reasonably. Let your viewer enjoy the photograph without thinking you’re a bit pompous.
#9: Post highly unflattering photos of your friends and tag them immediately.
Not everyone looks good from every angle. Next time you’re the go-to party photographer, think twice about showing off your friend’s double chins and muffin tops in your posts. If you wouldn’t want the photo posted of yourself looking that way, don’t post and tag someone else in that position, even if you think it’s hilarious. People are highly critical of themselves, and you will highly annoy and maybe even hurt someone if you publically post bad pictures of them.
#10: Didn’t your mom warn you that if you made a face like that it would stay that way? I guess not.
Don’t be the girl with 1,000 self-portraits and only one expression. Eyes wide open, camera slightly elevated as to not show the double chin area, same fake camera smile, same angle, framed from the shoulders up. We get it. You’re pretty and not fat at all. Seriously though, chances are that your friends love you and think you are beautiful. Try taking some photos with more natural smiles, vary the angle and lighting, and be proud of who you really are.
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