Advertising set to take over Instagram… but how does this change things?

The world as we know it is about to end. Instagram “the great and powerful” has fallen prey to our consumer society and will now—gasp!—start advertising in newsfeeds! It started with a post from Michael Kors on November 1 of a watch set amid a plate of French macarons, a cup of coffee and a postcard. Up next: photographs from Burberry, Levi’s and Ben and Jerry’s ice cream will pop up on our newsfeeds without our consent.

Photo by Michael Kors/Instagram

What I wonder is: How are these shots any different from all other Instagram images that the Michael Kors page, or the page of any other brand, has posted previously? For example, the below image was posted four weeks ago:

Photo by Michael Kors/Instagram

How is one image an ad while the other is not? The so-called non-ad, to me, is just a subtler form of idea seeding or thought manipulation. Both posts still set a mood and a client base and connect the brand to travel and worldliness.

The main difference is that no one will be able to filter ads. Even if you don’t follow a brand, its ads will still pop up in your newsfeed as #sponsored posts.

So, should Instagram remain a sacred advert-free zone? Was it ever truly advert free? Do you care? Let us know in the comments!