Social media will never BeReal

“BeReal” captures both the user and their
surroundings at the same time to be authentic.

The Catalyst / Screenshot of BeReal app

“BeReal” captures both the user and their surroundings at the same time to be authentic.

“Time to BeReal! 2 min left to capture a BeReal and capture what your friends are up to!”

At a different time each day, around 10 million social media users receive this notification. The rise of the newest social media platform, BeReal, has caught the attention of people of all generations, as its mission is to combat the tendency of social media users to only post the highlights of their lives.

The app advertises itself as, “a new and unique way to discover who your friends really are in their daily life,” but has BeReal really made a groundbreaking impact on the world of social media?

When the notification goes off, the app gives users two minutes to take a photo of exactly what they are doing. If they miss the notification, they still have the chance to post their daily photo, but it will be announced as “late” to all of their friends on the app. A user will not be able to see their friends’ posts until they post their own photo.

However, people often ignore the expectation to post their BeReal on time, and instead, wait until they are doing something exciting or look their best to snap their photo. Therefore, BeReal is serving the same purpose as any other social media app such as Snapchat or Instagram; it is just another platform for people to advertise their social lives, accomplishments, connections and looks.

BeReal may pride itself on sparking a change within the world of social media, but this is not the first time people have tried to make social media more authentic. For years, users have attempted to make posts more realistic by encouraging “casual posting” movements. Casual posting, though, quickly turned into influencers posting themselves staged perfectly in an attempt to convince viewers that they look effortless while lying in bed.

For the last two decades, platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and so many more have allowed people to brag and showcase their best selves. Despite efforts to break the stigma that surrounds it, social media will never be completely realistic. Despite BeReal’s popularity, it has not been used differently than the superficial platforms that already exist.