There is something incredibly abnormal about waking up every morning and reminding yourself of what you were doing one, maybe two or even five years ago. That said, I too must be incredibly abnormal as that is what I’ve become accustomed to doing every day. Where once I’d wake up and peruse my Twitter feed or Facebook page, I now analyze my past comings and goings one cringe at a time.
So what is it about Timehop that has millions of Smartphone and social networking users all over the world downloading this application? Are we just obsessed with the next ‘cool app’ or is there some deeper, root meaning to this phenomenon?
The great thing about the app itself is the ability to link numerous social networking sites and sync your history in one place. I have Facebook, Twitter (Although apparently my Twitter feed is too much for Timehop at over 15 000 tweets), Instagram and Foursquare synchronized to keep me in the know on just how dorky I was 4 years ago or remind me of what I was doing last year, in case it was too long ago to remember. The truth is, if you’re like me, extremely active on many (if not most) of the available social networking sites, then you’ll understand that there is too much information to just ‘scroll down’ when you’re in the mood to reminisce. What the creators of Timehop have done is given what the modern day Smartphone user so desperately craves, an easier and quicker way of doing things. You can view pictures, status updates, links and even the weather – Timehop also adds in a ‘fun fact’ a day, just another way of reminding you how much older you’re getting. Did you know that on this day, 18 years ago, Eminem released his first album? Yes, if your own youthful, skinnier pictures weren’t reminder enough, that kind of fact will ensure that you feel old today. Older than you were yesterday, ancient in comparison to your Timehop feed.
To be fair, we aren’t only downloading this application because it’s cool. We are still human after all, the ability to jump back in time allows us to relive the moments we thought worthy of a status update. In a time when I’m in the UK, sans my beautiful children and handsome hubby, my Timehop feed shows me our family photo shoot that I uploaded at this time a year ago… A reminder of how strong my family is, how we made it through the year that was and undoubtedly will make it through another. Two years ago, I was going to the gym and posted about a spinning class I had attended – a newfound stab of guilt eats at me for not having seen the inside of a gym in over a year, maybe the reminders that I need to get my A into G? Three years ago I was taking ‘Movember’ pics with my best friend at the time, a reminder that we no longer speak and instead do anything possible to avoid one another after the fall out. Four years ago I took a selfie for my then boyfriend, now husband. A happy reminder of just how in love I truly was and still wholeheartedly am.
While many would turn around and insult the desire to ‘live in the past’, I don’t see it as that. I see it as a common place for social media worthy memories. We posted those statuses for a reason, shared those pictures to boast, joined those social networks in the first place to sate our mortal innermost need to be accepted, loved and attended to. What is a ‘like’ if not a written form of agreement? What is a ‘share’ if not an electric ego boost?
What is Timehop, if not a storage place for your most loved memories?