If you are going to share an image on social media, how long do you wait?

If you are going to share an image on social media, how long do you wait?

Recently we took the kids to an event called Obstacool as a family fun day out.  Given it had been raining solidly for over a week I knew it was going to be a very muddy affair.  With this in mind I decided to take our point and shoot camera (with a wrist strap) instead of juggling my phone for photos.  If I am honest with myself I didn’t want to put my phone at risk of damage and determined that the camera could take one for the team if damages were to occur.

Ultimately the experience made me realise that I have become something of a ‘point and share’ photographer.  In the short ride home I was conscious of my impatience to view, edit and share the images at the first available opportunity, had those photos been on my phone it is very likely that I would have shared direct to Instagram and Facebook from the car on the way home.  I realised that if I don’t share photos within an hour at most, I tend not to get around to (or bother) sharing at all……why is that do you think??? An addiction to instant gratification (or similar)???? Do I think people will consider it outdated news and be disinterested?

Deep pondering questions about my psyche aside, I wanted to share what else I learned from the experience.

Slowing down made for a better collection of images.  A photo organiser I might be but that doesn’t mean I am necessarily a great photographer so by using being able to utilise the higher quality and resolution images from the camera I was able to take the time to edit the images and improve them.  I am not talking fancy editing either, I am talking about basic cropping and automated colour corrections at most but they made a big difference.  The photos I eventually shared to social media were much better than what I would have taken on the phone and realistically the delay of posting was not much more than a few hours .  No one was sitting there waiting for my post but because I was eager to share I downloaded at the first available opportunity once I rinsed off the mud and devoured my lunch (for the record obstacle courses make you famished).

Do you ever take photos on your phone and then try to crop or zoom them in and they are end up pixelated and out of focus?  I do, quite frequently but not today!  So yes, while it took longer to download and then edit from the computer before I was able to share the images, I was glad of the opportunity.  I learned that I might just take the camera more frequently

Why the camera was great:

  • The size was easier (smaller and lighter)
  • The wrist strap enabled me to join in the fun and still keep the camera (and phone) safe
  • The image size and quality was larger and higher enabling much better cropping.  In that busy environment I was able to crop out other kids and backgrounds, without compromising the image and ending up with pixelated shots like I would have on my phone

To a degree I feel that my ‘shoot and share’ habits could be detrimental to my storytelling goals and photo legacy.  If I share immediately and leave it at that how do I reflect on the images and more importantly the stories later on in life?  These thoughts have inspired our next blog where I explore a storytelling workflow and how it connects to a photo organising workflow.

Please share with us.

If you are going to share an image on social media, how long do you wait?  Do you do it as soon as you take it?  Within 10 minutes?  An hour?  Longer?

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