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Sick of selfies? 5 alternative ways to use Instagram

Instagram now has over a billion users. That’s a seventh of the human beings alive on planet Earth today.

But while some (nay, probably a majority) use the social network to peacock their wares, hate-like their rivals weekend getaways, or get to know someone before they embarrass themselves on their first Tinder date, Instagram has a number of other use cases.

For example…

Understand our planet

Use it to learn more about this weird rock we live on.

Want to learn more about South Africa? Want to be able to name different planes simply by looking at them? Want to understand how to make pickled vegetables? Instagram’s your answer.

Accounts like @NASA to @NatGeo explains intricate details of our planet, while others like @insecthaus_adi document the creepiest of crawlies alive.

For perspectives beyond the surface of the Earth, astronauts from the International Space Station are well worth your time.

Follow the news

Breaking news? Chances are it’ll be online.

Instagram may not be as adept at disseminating breaking news as Twitter, but the social network’s hashtag system often offers different perspectives into breaking events.

From #HurricaneFlorence, to the #Johannesburg CBD fire last month, to the snow which fell across South Africa a few weeks ago, unbeknown citizen journalists often post videos and stills of the world around them.

Learn how to cook

Recipes may be hard to come by on the social network, but it’ll definitely make you hungry regardless.

Cooking can be pretty daunting, but Instagram is a beautiful source of inspiration for experienced cooks and information for newbies alike.

Accounts like @ashrod explains the basics, while @ladyandpups posts painfully good pictures of her cuisine.

Follow the world’s leaders

Twitter can be toxic, so why not follow world leaders in an entirely different environment?

Instagram is pretty popular for world leaders. Former US President Barack Obama has more than 18-million followers, while India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the most followed current leader.

Donald Trump, Pope Francis and Indonesian President Joko Widodo‘s accounts are all home to sizeable followings.

Create a shopping list

If you’re not willing to completely ditch your current way of life on Insta, why not use it to catalogue worldly things you like?

For me, it’s one of the best ways to keep tabs on clothes you may want to purchase in the future.

But it’s also useful for shopping jewellery, accessories, or building a personal look book for a future apartment.

Feature image: Memeburn

Author | Andy Walker: Editor

Andy Walker: Editor
Camper by day, run-and-gunner by night, Andy prefers his toast like his coffee -- dark and crunchy. Specialising in spotting the next big Instagram cat star, Andy also dabbles in smartphone, gadget and game reviews over on Gearburn. More

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