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Sister Calls Out Instagram Influencer For Fake ‘Hiking’ Photos

You're never safe when your sister is there to call out your Instagram fakeness. Better get your sister on board!

Casey Sosnowski may have some beef with her sister, Carly. Shortly after Casey posted a photo of herself “hiking” in the Florida wilderness, her sister Carly called her out for the fake location tag.

The Instagram image had all the right ingredients. Lush pines, a well-trodden trail, athletic gear, and a water bottle. Basically, the look of every girl in her 20s in Denver.

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Did I go hiking? No. Is this my backyard?…… Maybe😉

A post shared by 𝐂𝐚𝐬𝐞𝐲 𝐒𝐨𝐬𝐧𝐨𝐰𝐬𝐤𝐢 (@caseyrsos) on

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Casey’s photo was perfect for the Instagram influencer with 10,000 followers. She was capitalizing on the increasingly popular trend of hiking. Ever since Cheryl Strayed’s memoir Wild, hiking has skyrocketed in popularity. The memoir captured Cheryl’s solo hiking along the Pacific Crest Trail from California to Washington. Since that book came out, we’ve seen lots more people hike.

In the Outdoor Foundation’s Participation Report the organization calculated that 44.9 million people hiked in 2017, up 30 million from the previous year. Of all Americans above the age of 6 49% went on a hike at least once in 2017. The trend is clear, hiking is in and Casey wanted to show how she “hikes” to her fans.

Called Out On Twitter

On the exact same day that Casey posted her fake photo of hiking, her sister Carly posted the real story behind the image on Twitter.

Casey’s initial Instagram caption read “Nature is the ultimate healer to all our problems 🌿 #naturelovers.” The unfortunate part wasn’t the caption, after all, it was where Casey geotagged the location on her Instagram post. Her post was tagged to Lake Okahumpka Park and Trail in Florida northwest of Orlando.

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The hilarious takedown by her sister Carly showed both Casey’s photo on Instagram and the “behind the scenes” photo that was actually in their backyard. She wrote on Twitter “My sister said she was going hiking…..this is our backyard.”

The slightly embarrassed Casey commented that she was “personally attacked” by her sister. She then changed her Instagram caption to read “Did I go hiking? No. Is this my backyard?…… Maybe😉.” She also changed the location to The Villages, Florida, just a 20-minute drive from their house.

Perhaps Casey went hiking there previously but didn’t quite look glam enough for a photoshoot. She then decided, well, my backyard is wild enough. Let’s just take the shot in my backyard after I take a shower and get my makeup done.

Carly’s Twitter post thus far has garnered 41,000 retweets and 277,000 likes, making Carly the true social media pro.

Both sisters have embraced the newly seen fame and exposure on social media channels and news channels. Makes me think, could this have possibly been the game plan all along. Everyone likes and “exposed” story and maybe that was the plan all along. As they say, any news is good news.

Credit: Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH)

It is well documented that Instagram is the worst of the major social media platforms for mental health. With constant pressure to show your life in a perfect light, the platform has been associated with depression, fear of missing out (FOMO), anxiety and bullying.

In the figure above, the Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) compared social media platforms and their net positive or negative impact on mental health. The only social media platform with a positive impact was YouTube. Of the negative influences, Twitter was the best, then Facebook, then Snapchat and finally Instagram with the most negative impact on mental health.

Everyone wants to live an Instagram perfect life, but the reality is often times we judge our everyday lives against someone else’s make-believe “perfect” moments. Was this an example of a well thought out ploy by the sisters or was this a perfect example of the pressure Instagram creates, especially for influencers, to present their best life.

Instagram Begins To Limit Diet and Cosmetic Surgery Posts & Ads

Instagram just announced that they will begin to limit and restrict its users under the age of 18 from viewing posts that publicize or “sell” weight loss and cosmetic surgery solutions.

Increasingly, Instagram influencers have been pushing get skinny quick methods, which largely amount to laxatives in various formats. Mental health experts argued that these posts, often targetted toward young teens had a detrimental impact on their mental well being.

A beautiful and skinny Instagram influencer pushing a weight loss pill is not good for anyone, it leads to increased risk of low self-esteem and depression among users. This could be a part of why, as mentioned above, Instagram is known as a social media platform that has the most detrimental impact on your mental health.

Thankfully, Instagram and Facebook are taking a stance to combat mental health issues within their platform, specifically associated with body positivity.

There are a number of organizations and celebrities that are pushing body positivity over plastic surgery and get skinny quick diets. Instagram finally heard them and the recommendations from mental health experts.

Every time I rap about being a big girl in a small world, it’s doing a couple things: it’s empowering my self-awareness, my body image, and it’s also making the statement that we are all bigger than this; we’re a part of something bigger than this, and we should live in each moment knowing that. – Lizzo

The new filter will automatically remove any ads or posts that publicize a get thin quick scheme. From there, any posts that attempt to monetize or sell exaggerated get skinny scheme or plastic surgery will not be shown to users under the age of 18. Users that are 18 and older will see all posts.

Admittedly, the dive into body positivity and mental health-related to Instagram was a bit of an aside compared to the main story topic but I think this sort of post goes perfectly in line with the issue of mental health on Instagram. For an Instagram influencer to feel the need to fake a location in order to feel like she fits in shows the prevalence of low-self esteem on the platform.

Trevor Nace

Trevor Nace is the founder of How-To Apps. He has a PhD from Duke University and has been in the tech space and writing about tech for a number of years. He previously started and ran an app website and his articles on apps have been read millions of times around the globe. You can find him on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.

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