Another day, another way to fake it until you make it on our ever-curated social media platforms.
In the most disheartening news I’ve heard in 2019, people are now hiring photo editors to doctor photographs and make it look like they’re on holiday somewhere fancy to impress their Facebook and Instagram following – formerly known in the real world as ‘friends’.
The service is so in demand, apparently, whole companies have been dedicated to helping people live a lie, thus feeding into the already toxic online environs in which we reside. Sigh.
One Nebraska-based photo-editing service, Fake A Vacation, superimposes clients on fake backgrounds including a sandy beach in Maui, the rushing waters of Niagara Falls, and even the Grand Canyon at sunset.
The service says it’s just for fun – but actually the demand for crap like this is indicative of the blurred boundaries between real life joy and desperation for validation in ‘likes’ and virtual ‘lovehearts’.
A total of 14 per cent of over 4,000 American adults lie about their holidays and 10 per cent of those even went the extra mile to post a fake picture on social media, according to a survey by Jetcost.
Why, you ask? Because they wanted to impress other people and make them jealous – friends, family, colleagues, whoever, surely no one is worth impressing with a lie?
But what do I know?
Tom Eda, the lead marketing employee of Fake A Vacation, told The New York Post they fake it because vacations are too expensive or because they had to cancel trips last minute and still wanted the pictures… Because what’s the point of seeing the Eiffel Tower or the Northern Lights if you haven’t got some good content for the Gram?
Elsewhere, in the business of business no one should’ve asked for, Krome Photos offers travel scenes in Parc Güell in Barcelona, hot air balloons over Cappadocia, Turkey, and Beijing’s Forbidden City.
Is nothing sacred anymore? What’s real? What’s not? If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to talk about it on Twitter, does Instagram still ruin our real lives?
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A former emo kid who talks too much about 8Chan meme culture, the Kardashian Klan, and how her smartphone is probably killing her. Francesca is a Cardiff University Journalism Masters grad who has done words for BBC, ELLE, The Debrief, DAZED, an art magazine you’ve never heard of and a feminist zine which never went to print.