Are You a Social Media “Porn” Star?

November 13th, 2014   •   no comments   

building porn photo

We are living in the age of “porn”. And most of it has very little to do with sex.

Unlike the more salacious kind, such “porn” are usually completely safe for families and kids. Unfortunately, like their more notorious namesake, such behaviours could be addictive. Carried to extremes, they can be unhealthy for one’s mental and physical well-being.

In fact, some of us are so obsessive compulsive about capturing and sharing every waking moment that we end up suffering cold turkey if our Digital Documenting & Distribution Devices (4Ds) go haywire or are wrangled away from us!

What are the kinds of “porn” that we are talking about?


Sushi photo

Photo by [puamelia]

Yes, this is the most common form of visual content. We photograph virtually every meal item, adjusting the lighting, angling our cameras and smartphones, and ensuring that every delicious morsel is lovingly and meticulously documented for posterity.

That’s not all. Beyond taking pics of individual items, we also seek to capture a photo of the general ambience of the restaurant or cafe, document its sign board, and snap a group photo for keeps. We also make it a point to tag the exact location on Four Square, and share our delectable content on various social networks.


Lake Moraine photo

How many photos do you take when you travel? 100? 1000? 10,000?

Chances are that we “porn” stars are so busy taking photos of every epic travel moment that we sometimes forget to relax and savour that very same moment. Yes, we want to capture truckloads of visual content because “we may never come back here again”, but should you scream cold murder and hyperventilate when your camera freezes in the Alps?

Airport and air tickets….. Check!

Posing in the cramped airline seat…. Check!

Foreign airport scene…. Check!

Views of the street…. Check!

Hotel lobby and rooms…. Check!

Little wonder then that so many of us come back from holidays more than tired than refreshed!

Fashion and BeautyPorn

fashion photo
Photo by BarbieFantasies

Before you feminists imagine that I’m targeting ladies, the truth is that many guys are equally guilty of this. From Outfits Of The Day (#OOTD) to Look Of The Day (#LOTD) to Shoes Of The Day (#SOTD) to whatever, there is almost always a #hashtag to go with every item that you put on your body. Our bodies are not just to be beautified – they also provide the canvas for our visual content.

From faces to nails to hair, there is always something about our looks that needs to be obsessively photographed and shared.


office photo

No, I am not kidding. Many folks these days are taking photos at their work places and spaces and sharing them to the whole wide world. From mobile office spaces and desks to celebrations with colleagues and anniversary events, we have all been guilty of “documenting” our work environments.

Of course, this varies from occupation to occupation, but I’ve seen construction workers taking photos at sites, Home Team officers snapping photos of themselves pre- and post-mission, and of course all manner of work spaces being documented.


fitness photo
Photo by Rance Costa

Pics or it didn’t happen seems to be specially written for gym rats, cycling crack heads, ultra-marathoners, or Zumba addicts. Every race or run is documented and photographed – shoes (with laces tied or being tied), side profiles, back profiles (now sometimes these veer on soft-porn), front profiles, pre-workout shot, post-workout exhausted face shot, etc.

Oh and videos! Yes, lots of 15 seconders showing biceps curls, pull-ups, squats, dead lifts…. Every agonising moment must be captured and shared as an inspiring and motivating content.


fireworks photo

Events are us! We digital “pornographers” love to take photos of every single static and dynamic object.

Behind the scenes, backstage, front stage, decor, performers, audiences, exhibits, more exhibits, posters, backdrops… Videos are key too, especially if our kids (bless their cute and charming little hearts) are performing on stage! Every facet of the event can be content for our social platforms.

Which brings me to my next porn subject…

Baby and Kiddie Porn

cute baby photo

No, its not what you think (and I’m vehemently against any form of paedophilia)! I am talking instead about the gazillion photographs and videos that parents take of their cutesy pies, princes and princesses, and all of the firsts:

– First smile/laugh/cry/frown

– First crawl/walk/run/hop/climb

– First word/words/sentence

– First performance, second performance, third performance…..nth performance

– First month/year/years etc

Of course beyond this, there are also the obligatory dolling up of kids shot, first day of school shot, last day of school shot, favourite teacher shot, and so on and so forth.

Cute Animal Porn

Boo and Buddy

Courtesy of Boo the Dog

No prizes for guessing how rampant this is. In fact, the “world’s cutest” dog Boo has over 16.4 million “likes” (and growing) on his Facebook page. Let’s not forget the thousands and thousands of cute kittens, pandas, tiger cubs, baby giraffes, baby elephants, baby seals, and my personal favourite – baby porcupines!


Birthday cake photo

Photo by Cake Girl by Hyeyoung Kim

From birthdays to weddings to funerals (ok maybe less of funerals), we love to party, pose and photograph. Often, this is a combination of virtually much of the above – foodporn, fashion porn (my party dress), beauty porn, kiddie porn, and maybe even travel porn.

One thing about anniversary content are the endless photographs of people. Yes, we are talking about friends, family, relatives, buddies, bros, sistas, colleagues, ex-colleagues, ex-ex-colleagues, crew, and anybody else who has been a part of the special occasion. Which brings me to the final and most popular form of porn…

Selfie and Wefie Porn

selfie photo

Photo by Andrew from Sydney

Love it or loathe it, this is the most popular kind of “porn” that we face these days.

With the invention of the selfie stick, everybody has gone mad in trying to snap a photo of themselves in every possible situation:

Climbing up a Mountain or Hill – selfie or it didn’t happen.

Playing basketball with the mates – selfie or it didn’t happen.

Any kind of gathering – wefie or it didn’t happen.

Doing your business in the loo – selfie or it didn’t happen.

Selfie and wefie porn is especially popular amongst public personalities like actors, singers, politicians, models and athletes. In fact, every self-respecting social influencer must know a thing or two about taking an awesome selfie.

Are there other ways in which we are “pornographing” ourselves in the social age?

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