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HindustanTimes Fri,31 Oct 2014

The Insta-celebs

Srishti Jha, Hindustan Times   July 06, 2013
First Published: 22:46 IST(6/7/2013) | Last Updated: 01:27 IST(7/7/2013)

As images are set to become the new social media communication, celebs have taken to micro-photo blogging sites like fish to water.

Instagram, acquired by Facebook last year, has more than 130 million users who have uploaded over 16 billion pictures, and reports indicate that the site has grown by about 11% this year itself.

“We’re tiptoeing into a potentially very deep and interesting new way of communicating,” Mitchell Stephens, author of The Rise of the Image, the Fall of the Word, and a journalism professor at New York University, is quoted in The New York Times as saying about images taking over as the new form of communicating online.

For celebrities, it seems to have become the favoured way to communicate directly with their followers, posting pictures of their glamourous and creative world instantly.

From Madonna — who posted herself doing a work-out regime when Instagram released its video service, to Liz Hurley’s new metrosexual fiance cricketer Shane Warne, who raised eyebrows when he posted a bare-chested picture of himself in bed — the image is becoming the favoured way to say something simple, or quirky.

Says online strategist Harshil Karia, “Images have become the perfect medium for the celebs to showcase their inspirations and moods.” He adds, “They want to bring visually alive the world they live in.”

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Of course all this is being taken with a pinch of salt in the social networking world. The blatant self-display of the lives of the rich and famous is giving rise to some satire, like the Tumblr blog ‘Rich kids of Instagram’ which is popular.

It’s not only adding to their following but also puts across their personal styling, their insights and beliefs across to make them a bigger brand.

While Beyonce posted a picture of her daughter recently, Priyanka Chopra, who  lost her dad, also shared personal pictures from her family album.

@robertocavalli: The designer’s account shows his love for animals and nature which inspires a lot of his works. Other posts have him meeting celebs and his holiday destinations.

@justinbieber: With mostly self clicks, this young celeb has a huge fan following. The pictures posted offer an insight into his social life and also his new buys, like a Versace neckpiece.

@michelleobama: The First Lady of the US is among the latest to join Instagram. Her pictures seem to be an attempt to build the First Lady brand, showing her official visits.

@kimkardashian: Recently the second most followed celeb on instagram, Kardashian posted pictures taken during her pregnancy and also some from her fashion shoots.

@anooooshka: A recent joinee, actress Anushka Sharma posts self clicks, travel pictures, her candid moments with friends and family and some random object shots.

@sidmallya: Always in news for reasons good & bad, this biz kid has pics of events, parties, & his workouts. “We have the hottest hospitality team on the grid” he says of this picture.

@sonamkapoor: Actor Sonam Kapoor is known as much — if not more — for her fashion style than her films, and her Instagram account shows why. The gal has an eye for aesthetics!

@Bachchan: This junior Bachchan posts pictures with international celebs, random shots while travelling, award shows and movie shoots.You know when and where he is.

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