I check Instagram 50-3,000 times per day, depending on how much procrastination I’ve penciled into my schedule. Which is why I was SHOCKED, not to mention completely APPALLED, when I grabbed for my usual social media crutch and was hit with a bombshell of betrayal.
I found out that when someone messages you, it only shows up as a notification if you follow each other. That’s crazy! I missed like three messages from strangers who wanted to tell me things! I probably wouldn’t have responded anyways, but, still, it would have been nice if Instagram gave me a heads up.
Oh yeah, and they changed their logo, too. It’s pretty cool.
For those of you still rocking the flip phone, the new logo is an abstracted version of the original old-school, Polaroid-esque facade. The rainbow colors once in the top right hand corner are now a purple, pink, and orange glow that bleeds across the square, and the original camera figure is just a white outline. All in all, it adds a pleasant pop of color to your screen. It’s nice.
Apparently, others aren’t taking the change so well. Adweek called Instagram’s logo change “a travesty” and “the worst design fail of the year,” which is a huge statement considering Uber changed its logo to look like a Matrix fan fic app two months ago. Seriously? You got rid of the capital U for a representation of “a bit and atom”? Way to turn clarity and convenience into a weird overreaching metaphor.
The Instagram logo is still clearly a camera, and it’s clearly not pretending to be anything else.
It’s like when Taco Bell rolled out their Live Mas rebrand in the early 2000s. They ditched the stereotypical Mission-style architecture on their stores—a bit on-the-nose for hard shell tacos with yellow cheese—and replaced the once-signature arch with an abstracted version underscoring the logo. (Taco Bell’s revamped color scheme also involved purple, pink, and orange, making us really hope there’s a Taco’stagram collab on the way).
The vibe and the ethos are still there, it just preempted the forces that would have made a change too late. And you know what happened soon after? They created the Doritos Locos Taco and changed the fast food game for good. Boom. Mic dropped.
Instagram’s Polaroid-y logo was always too on-the-nose and overly ironic for the world’s biggest photo and video sharing app, and I think the change came at just the right moment. You keep doing you, Instagram, and I’ll keep wasting hours of my day scrolling past identical top-down shots of pizza.