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Instagram star re-edits captions before quitting social media

Not real life. Only reason we went to the beach this morning was to shoot these bikinis because the company paid me.

By Emily Brooks
She had the perfect life to those half a million followers scrolling through her instagram feed, but Essena O’Neill has thrown in the towel upon which she so often lay in bikinis for paid posts.
The 19-year-old Aussie posted a video to YouTube on Monday explaining why she’s quitting social media, which is most succinctly explained in her renamed instagram account - Social Media Is Not Real Life
O’Neill deleted over 2000 of her photos on the social media platform and re-edited the captions to the remaining with what was really going on behind the image.
“I’m quitting Instagram, YouTube and Tumblr. Deleted over 2000 photos here today that served no real purpose other than self promotion. Without realising, I’ve spent majority of my teenage life being addicted to social media, social approval, social status and my physical appearance,” wrote O’Neill in one of the captions.
“Social media, especially how I used it, isn’t real. It’s contrived images and edited clips ranked against each other. It’s a system based on social approval, likes, validation in views, success in followers. It’s perfectly orchestrated self-absorbed judgement. I was consumed by it.”
O’Neill has quit modelling and created the website letsbegamechangers.com to promote experiences beyond those solely aesthetic, while also encouraging others to experiment and remove themselves from social media for one week.
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