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How Instagram changed our world

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How Instagram changed our world

Photo caption – In the frame: Instagram forced people to ‘make their lives more worthy of posting about.’ Photograph: Alamy Stock Photo. Article by Amelia Tait.

It started as a photo-sharing platform, but quickly rose to become the most influential app of our generation. Now, a forensic new book reveals the struggles and eccentricities of the men behind Instagram

One day in the autumn of 2015, a small but significant change was implemented at the Instagram offices in Menlo Park, California. Employees arrived at work to discover the rubbish bins under each desk had disappeared. The bins had allowed people to work efficiently – no one had to stand up to throw away a coconut water carton or wasabi pea wrapper after they’d enjoyed the company’s free food. But the bins weren’t really Instagram’s – they were installed by Facebook, which had purchased the photo-sharing app for $1bn in 2012.

Kevin Systrom, Instagram’s co-founder, didn’t like the bins. He didn’t like the cardboard boxes employees used to file papers and paraphernalia. He hated old, sagging birthday balloons. Instagram’s offices, he explained, after removing the bins, should represent its ethos. They should be beautiful, simple, pristine – much like the app itself. […]

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