VSCO is the go-to place for risky pictures

Emma Charles, Reporter

If someone posts a picture, they’re looking for attention. That’s a fact that can’t be disputed, otherwise people would just keep their photos to themselves.

There are a lot of different motives for posting up: You took a cute selfie you just had to show off, you had a wild night with the boys, you had an awe-inspiring trip you want to let your followers vicariously enthuse through the pictures you captured.

But why does it seem that whenever someone has a so-called “risky” picture, their first thought is to publish it on the VSCO app?

VSCO’s original purpose was solely photo editing, but it grew into a realm of its own where users can share photos and collection update (repost other people’s) pictures that they like.

“I mostly just use VSCO to edit my pictures for Instagram, but almost all of my friends post pictures on VSCO and have the link to their account in their Instagram account so anyone can look at it,” Lucy Griffin (’21) said.

“Depending on who you are, some girl’s VSCOs are very scandalous, artsy pictures, or just pictures they don’t want to post on Insta,” Brooke Overmier (’20) said. She doesn’t have a VSCO, but almost all of her best friends do.

VSCO was created in 2011 with the purpose of being a “community of expression.” The company states on the home page of their website, “[Creativity] takes different forms, a mad juxtaposition that reflects the individual’s own unpredictable, winding path. It isn’t limited to the polished aspects of life, but embraces all facets of human existence, the ups and downs, the loud and quiet.”

Megan Anzalone (’19), an avid VSCO user agrees with the VSCO company that individualism should be expressed boldly with no second thoughts.

“Girls should be able to post risky pictures on VSCO because it was originally more of a girls’ community and it’s a way to express your thoughts and feelings in a creative way,” Anzalone said.

The company and its users encourage expression in all of its forms. But it’s a constant debate where the line should be drawn between expressing yourself and asking for too much attention—if you know what I mean.

Way too often you hear, “Oh my god, did you see what she just put up on VSCO?” and you open the app to find a picture of scantily clad girls, or someone’s legs in the bath, or some couple all over each other. Would they post these pictures on Instagram or Facebook? Probably not.

“The more skin showing, the more likely I am to collection it,” David Staab (’18) said.

Although he said this jokingly, Staab brings up a valid point. Girls are setting themselves up to be sexualized when they post images of themselves in revealing clothing. VSCO is public whether you’d like to call it a “girls’ community” or not.

Now I’m not condoning the remarks a guy might make about a girl’s pictures, and I’m not “victim shaming” either. But come on, take a look at our generation, people are going to talk whether it’s the right thing to do or not.

“If I had a VSCO, there’s no way I’d be posting that stuff with all those creepers out there,” Noah Wisner (’18) said.

Parents constantly caution their children to be careful with what they put on the internet because it never goes away, and while it might seem like they are overreacting, it’s true. Anytime a picture is posted on the internet it is subject for all of the public eye to see; anyone can save that picture and use it for whatever purpose they want.

“Girls shouldn’t post anything on any type of social media without thinking they won’t be judged,” Bruce Hoosier (’19) said, an active social media user who sees the reactions his friends have to girls’ VSCO pictures.

Moral of the story: sharing a photo isn’t a short term decision.

I’m sure this whole entire school has watched the anti-cyberbullying video that the guidance counselors play, where the high school girl hangs up the scandalous picture of herself in school, and no matter how many times she tears it down after she hung it up, it always shows up again to haunt her.

It was easy to laugh at that video when we first saw it, but that situation is applicable to everyday life now.  Think about how often screenshots of other people’s photos are posted on a finsta or sent in a group message. It happens every day.

“I think that you should be able to post what you want because it’s your life and you choose how you want to live it,” Overmier said. “There will always be people who are going to judge you, but everyone is free to do what they want.”

Girl’s post more intimate pictures on VSCO because, from the outside, it appears to be safer. For the most part, boys don’t follow the accounts directly. But remember that everything on the web is accessible, and not everyone is going to appreciate you showing off your figure in the way you’d want them to appreciate it. Post at your own risk.