Social media has us hooked. Influencers post fantastic photos 1-2 times per day, with some sharing up to 5 high-definition images a day. Their audiences are equally hooked and often spend over 2 hours scrolling through their feeds for photos. So much so that they look into high-speed “internet providers for my area” so that they can quickly access more engaging and beautiful photos. That’s the power of “the gram”.
There is no doubt that people are interested in images of people. More so, in anyone famous. But surprisingly many of the most popular images on the internet are those of animals both exotic and domestic. In this article, we will explore the kinds of images that internet users desire on social media platforms and why it is the case.
A clue to how important images of people are on the internet would involve answering the question: would you accept someone onto your Facebook page that did not have a photograph attached to their profile? In most cases the answer would be “no”. We all, even on the internet, like to know who we are interacting with. It seems safer that way, too. That is, assuming an accurate photograph has been attached to a profile we are considering. This idea of profiles is, after all, how online dating works. It is through how an image looks, as much as shared hobbies, that decisions are made in that respect.
Another point to make is that posts that contain images of people, rather than just scenery, tend to attract more likes. Part of this may be that there is no way of knowing whether someone has really taken that magnificent landscape unless at least one of their family members appears somewhere in the foreground. Also, people create humor, and therefore the funniest of all the images will be humans doing the silliest of things to be noticed.
Cuteness pleases most people’s hearts and, as a result, pets make the perfect pictures to post on a social media site or webpage. Dogs generally have a naturally pleasing expression that will cheer us up even in low mood. It is as if they are born entertainers.
In 2018, and this is likely to have changed, the most popular dog, gaining some 19.1 million posts, was the Labrador Retriever. Other most posted dogs include Golden Retriever, Siberian Husky, Dachshund, and Pomeranian. The popularity one would assume relates to whether they have been seen with celebrities, starred in films, or appeared in television ads and poster campaigns. For instance, the Old English Sheepdog, which became almost known as the “Dulux Dog” because of the paint it advertised. The Andrex Puppy was famous for selling toilet paper. The Andrex brand is British but owned by American company Kimberly Clark. Back in 1972, well before social media platforms, the Andrex puppies, which were Labradors, were getting into a mess with tissue paper on TV.
Always trending are close-up images for someone to guess what has been photographed. These will mostly be photographed in macro or by a microscope camera attachment. It is amazing how different something can look close-up. This is rather like an oil painting that close-up looks like a mass of thickly applied paint with all the brushstrokes visible, but from a distance, looks every bit a work of art. It can be hard to capture texture on a photograph, but photographs taken with a macro lens are the closest thing to it. The macro lens makes sure that the image is not blurred and remains in focus.
In conclusion, and to add to the list, it is interesting to note that in 2017 the default wallpaper for Microsoft Windows XP became famous as the world’s most viewed picture. That was a scene taken with a camera, rather than one that had been created using computer graphics. And it is as Fred R. Barnard said as a headline when promoting his advertisements in Printer’s Ink in 1921, “One Look Is Worth a Thousand Words.” He attributed the saying to an ancient Japanese philosopher, and it remains true to this day. Whether the image be in printed form or digitalized.