Good news everyone: Instagram has caught up with the rest of the social media world and is adding a “mute” feature that allows you to remove people’s photos from your feed without unfollowing them. Finally, you can preserve the veneer of being interested in your friends and family’s photos without actually having those photos clog up your timeline. No longer will you have to pick between an awkward, “Hey, did you unfollow me?” conversation or having to scroll past another selfie.
This means you’ll now be free from having to look at the following characters all day:
Wannabe Lifestyle influencer
Your Instagram feed is a carefully polished cliché: heirloom salads, chia seeds, seasonal fruit, Rupi Kaur’s milk and honey, Roxane Gay’s Bad Feminist. You delete anything that doesn’t get 30 likes. The only thing stopping you from posting #spon content is that no one has offered. Despite knowing your online life is a facade (I know you IRL), I’m somehow also jealous of you?
The “Expert” Photographer, a.k.a. “Every Meal Is a Photo Op”
Art lurks in every corner. Crack where the sidewalk meets the pavement? Line that shit up with your sneakers—that’s a photo. Your bio lists a fancy DSLR that makes all photos look beautiful regardless of their composition. (Muting you only solves part of the problem, since you’ll inevitably show me your photography on your phone when I see you in real life. You will also tell me about your new drone.)
You just used my kitchen scale to count your macros, get your abs out of my timeline.
The Person Who Posts 32 Photos in Their Story
You’ve posted so many times the bar at the top of the screen started to look like a dotted line, and then went back to looking like a solid bar.
Your Partner's Hot Ex
This is perhaps the most vaunted category of hate-follow—the 3 AM Instagram hole where you watch all their stories even though they can see you watching. (You can’t unfollow them because that means they win.)
Any Engaged Couple
My heart won’t go on.
New Parents/People Who Are About to Be Parents
I love you and I love your partner. I am very happy for the new chapter in your life. I even might want to see photos of the kid, once in a while. I do not, however, need to learn about every step of your “beautiful journey” through captions of black-and-white photos of your pregnant stomach, nor do I need to see multiple photos every day of your baby doing baby things. Sorry—I know the baby is the most important thing in your life, but it’s the 1,184th most important thing in mine. I look forward to unmuting you 18 months from now.
Note: If you have a gender reveal party I am unfollowing you immediately.
She just discovered hashtags.
She just discovered she can make videos.
How do you have enough money to go to Hawaii on every summer Friday? And why do you always include #travel #adventure when you clearly own a house there? I’m muting you not because I hate you or your photos, but because they send me into a pit of despair.
Your Friend Who Just Got a New Puppy
Actually, can you follow someone twice?
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