BeReal or BeFake?

By Jaden Gregorio (he/him)

The new social media platform BeReal has started to gain traction with many audiences across the world; as it gains popularity at Petaluma High, it is evident that people have mixed feelings about it. In my opinion, the app is fun, but fails in achieving true authenticity like the app hopes to.

The app encourages users to post once a day by sending out a notification to “be real” during a random two-minute time period where the app’s users are motivated to post whatever they are doing at that moment. The purpose of the app is to take the stress off of curating a perfect image of one’s lifestyle and to “be real” about what someone is doing, unlike many other social media forms.

Though there is a set amount of time to post on BeReal, users are able to still post late. People, including myself, believe that this feature defeats the purpose of the app. Permission to post late allows users to curate the image that they’re always doing something fun, which contradicts the app’s hope to not have users so focused on their social appearance.

Despite BeReal being popularized by primarily Generation Z audiences, other age groups use the app too. Psychology and English teacher Heather Archibald, is a fan of the app but understands people’s doubts of the app. BeReal “is in the moment [of the] photo and I love that...there’s no filters and you’re just being real,” said Archibald. “But, you can delete and retake [a] million times. So, you can still choose the most flattering [one and choose] what looks good.”

I believe that the app should perhaps consider either extending the period of time to take the photo (ex. 10 minutes) or not allow users to post after that time limit is over. They also shouldn’t allow users to retake their photos. Let’s be real, everyone has their lazy days and it would be ingenuine to depict otherwise.

Though I dislike users being able to post after the given two-minute period, I must admit waiting for my BeReal notification is still a very exciting thing to look forward to every day. It’s especially gratifying to look back on adventurous and activity-filled days while also seeing my days of laziness.