Instagram Review

Let's talk about Instagram for a second. On a phone, it looks beautiful. It's pretty easy to navigate, and having a white background on your platform makes it look more professional and clean. However, when you’re trying to post something, it can be difficult if you have a rectangular piece to show the world. You have to either shrink it down really really small, or post it in slides, neither of which really looks good. The platform was inspired by the Holga camera, which takes pictures in a square format, but is also fairly old. And if you want to use Instagram on your laptop, yes you can comment and like posts, but you can't post anything from your laptop or access your messages to talk to people. If you have files on your computer that you want to post, you have to send them to your phone, and THEN post them, which can really ruin the quality of your images. Please consider adding the posting feature to your website, Instagram. Please. Artists everywhere would be screaming "thank you" to you.

A view of an Instagram account on a mobile device. There's a place for a name, a bio, etc.
A view of the Homepage on a mobile device.
A snapshot of what it looks like when you're in the process of formatting a post.
A view of Instagram on a laptop.

Tapas Review

For those who may not know, Tapas is a platform where creatives can post comic art, novels, and other story-based media. It's a pretty fun little website, with little ink blobs that guide you from place to place around the various pages. You have a library, where you can save the comics you want to keep up with. This library will also give you notifications every time a comic updates, so you know as soon as possible. From the consumer point of view, Tapas is pretty cool! The color scheme is nice, and everything on the home page is easy to read. And the homepage features a new comic every day, so most authors get a good amount of exposure. From the creator side, it can be a little harder, especially if you're new to the website. The files you upload have to be pretty small, and if your panels vary in size and shape, it can take a while before you can get the hang of it. If you want to create a brand new series, you have to have a thumbnail image for your series (that can only be so big), a description of your comic, tags so people know where to look for it, and a header image for your comic. It's a lot, and can be overwhelming. Overall, it's a nice little website, and I'm incredibly proud of all the creators who work hard to get their work out there. Good job, Tapas.

The top half of the Tapas page on a laptop.
The bottom half of the Tapas page.

YouTube Review

In light of the newest YouTube scandal, I'd like to talk about how the executives have managed to make the platform better for creators and the entire YouTube community. For those of you who don't religiously keep up with YouTube, Onision's sister channel (UhOhBro) was deleted because the content on there was insulting to groups who are already marginalized. He'd been warned several times that his content was too blunt/offensive to be put on YouTube, but of course, he ignored YouTube's warnings. They've since said they wanted to produce a more “family-friendly” image, both for advertisers and for the parents who are using YouTube to help entertain their kids instead of putting them in front of a tv. One of their new-ish updates (and my personal favorite) is the dark mode option. Enabling dark mode gives your homepage a grayish/black color, which is said to be easier on the eyes than a bright white. It's a great addition, and I'm ecstatic that they finally have an option that's easier on the eyes. If you open your YouTube homepage, your recommended videos are usually the first on your feed, or videos YouTube picks from your subscription list that you might be interested in. If you open the mobile app, you can sometimes see creators posting photos, polls, and other content that isn't in a video format. This is also a smart move on their part, since most people don’t comment on videos most of the time. YouTube's really trying to pull themselves together and clean up their image, and so far, they're doing an alright job. I'm looking forward to seeing what you do next, YouTube. A little scared too, but excited.

The homepage of the YouTube app.
The settings page of Youtube (enable dark mode, change language, etc)
The homepage of YouTube on a laptop.