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I asked students, what’s the one word that comes to their mind when they hear the word ‘Instagram’?

A few months ago, I spoke to some students at the London School of Economics. And just for fun - I asked them, what’s the one word that comes to their mind when they hear the word ‘Instagram’? Students at LSE came up with a lot of answers - some said ‘guilt’, some said ‘anger’, and a few others said ‘opportunities’. I have always associated Instagram with Envy. And why NOT? Everyone wants to flaunt their perfectly curated and filtered version of reality. Move over to any other social media platform, you’d realize that there are remnants of the 7 deadly sins in each of those business models. Zomato (gluttony), Twitter(wrath), Netflix (Sloth), Linkedin (Pride), and so on. So if you are to build a billion-dollar venture, you just need to figure out a way to massage one of the 7 deadly sins. Your Stanford-educated engineers will design algorithms that will not only drive your EBITA Margins but also drive up the anxiety, and insecurity amongst 20-year-old kids. These algorithms will sadly confine you to spending time with people who are exactly like you, these people think like you, and they have exactly the same ambitions as you have - and this leads to a lot of social anxiety and cut-throat competition. The best way out of this conundrum is to be part of communities that are completely different from how you think, they are different in terms of perspectives, and they are different in terms of their background. You will learn and grow more by disagreeing with others than by being part of the communities of lemming - where just one perspective gets magnified. ❤️


Author - Naman Shrivastava, Cofounder Global Governance Initiative, Ex- United Nations, Former Government of India Advisor

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