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Is Vero the Best Alternative to Instagram?

Many photographers have become increasingly disillusioned by Instagram. Where once there was an app that placed top priority on sharing images, making it an invaluable tool for networking and connecting with potential clients, there is now a feed stuffed with videos, ads, and, of course, the dreaded algorithm. This has left many photographers looking for an alternative, with one of the current frontrunners being Vero. Is it worth investing time and effort in it? This photographer used it for 30 days to answer that question.

Coming to you from Pat Kay, this excellent video discusses his experience after using Vero for a month. No doubt, it is becoming increasingly clear that Instagram is no longer worth the investment for a lot of photographers, but the problem with most alternatives is simply one of inertia. There are already many apps with better interfaces, higher-quality images, more features, but none have the massive user base that Instagram does, making it a tough sell for photographers looking to move and leaving many of us between a rock and a hard place. Nonetheless, Vero does seem to have more potential than most recent alternatives. Check out the video above for the full rundown from Kay. 

Alex Cooke's picture

Alex Cooke is a Cleveland-based portrait, events, and landscape photographer. He holds an M.S. in Applied Mathematics and a doctorate in Music Composition. He is also an avid equestrian.

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I would fully endorse any viable alternative to Instagram, however Vero is too closely associated with Russian interests for my comfort

Putin will be gone soon enough.

Do you know how ridiculous you sound?

Tell me you're american without telling me you're american.

Wow, what a baseless statement, care to provide citations to backup such an outlandish claim??

I agree with you. I know what's been published about Russian involvement is old. But unless something makes clear that it's no longer the case, I'm reluctant to move over to Vero. For ioas 12, who is repeating Republican claims of canceling whenever someone don't use their favorite service, I would suggest that your country consider canceling Putin if you'd like better relations with other countries. The Ukraine situation and the disinformation that he has disseminated via social media elsewhere understandably make non-Republicans nervous about using social social media that has a history of Russian involvement.

I watched Pat's video last night so I have had all day to think about this.

I left Insta (I still have my page online but inactive) over two months ago and I realised within one week that I should have left long before. Perhaps a recent text by psychologist Jenika McDavitt says it better than I could. She talks about Insta and other such platforms as tools and says we need to consider them as such. When a tool no longer serves our purpose often we have a problem letting go. She outlines three psychological factors which make it difficilt - 1: The Streetlight Effect, 2: The Sunk Cost Effect and 3: the Mere Exposure Effect. I would suggest taking a look at them.

In about five years on Insta, it bought me (directly) zero "clients" (I was semi professional). It brought me excellent contact and friendship (the real type) with other wonderful professionals in the field and I do so miss the daily contact with them, however, because I worked at those friendships, they are not lost entirely.

Now that I am retired I have other priorities and while Vero will not answer all of those, at the end of this month I am going to open an account there (also on Grainery)... not because it it looks so much better (the photographs certainly do) but because there are almost none of the things that have made me so unhappy with Insta recently: the bots, ads, Reels (video is handled very nicely), shadow-bans, the algorithm. Pat likes the algorithm, obviously it works for him... it has never worked for me, nor for many aspiring photographers I know.... for many, it is simply heartbreaking.

There was one point in Pat's video regarding the CEO of Vero reaching out to him through a post regarding his critique of the platform that drew my attention more than others; he found it to be a sign that the platform was "small" and I gathered from that, perhaps insignificant. But perhaps to put this in perspective we could think of a petition led by a top-rated internationally renowned photographer which collected I think almost half a million signatures that was what it took for the CEO of Instagram to announce that they were "reconsidering" (some of the) recent changes to the famous, or infamous algorithm. The CEO of Vero answered Pat's complaints directly one by one and informed him that the improvements he suggested were already in the pipeline. He didn't need a petition signed by almost half a million people to announce "we'll think about it".

*Vero :)

hahaha.... many thanks!

Hi Joe, very insightful comment. Can I find the text from Jenika McDavitt somewhere? Tried, but with no luck. Thank you.

Thanks Matus. can you send me your email through here? It's actually part of a newsletter and a little long to paste. She is a psychologist specialising in photographers... !!! She advises re webpages, promotion and communication. Her email is jenika@psychologyforphotographers.com

I was going to consider Vero, but, 3 main things stopped me:

1. You have to download a desktop app. You can't just use off a browser. There's no way I'm going to install a social media app on my computer. Vero needs to not be lazy and build for browser use like what IG has done. IG's browser experience has come a long way.

2. The images are sooooo smaaall. Below are printscreens of my desktop. Top one is Vero and IG next. It's not even a comparison. IG used to be like this years ago.

3. IG looks like they reverted back to their proper Home screen Suggested Posts. Without me needing to update the app, they are now showing still images again instead of bombing my feed with reels. Reels are now just a tiny strip you can just scroll past.


Fifteen second summary? I generally don't do videos.

Anyone using Zonerama? What thinketh thou?

I took a quick peek. They are probably the only site that I've come across that does zero to minimal image compression for display. Just randomly checking out of the images, the average is about 2.5 megs. Compared to most sites that reduce to about 250 to 600 KB. The downside is unless you have pretty fast internet (I do not), you'll notice a delay when you go from image to image, which can get pretty annoying. I'd rather have the speed of compressed images. Unless you're pixel-peeping, you'll hardly (if at all) notice the quality difference.

Instagram used to be a good platform when Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger owned it. But when Mark Zuckerberg bought the platform, it started to go downhill despite of mainstream media hype about the platform's popularity. Instagram turned into Facebook 2.0, and it continues to lose its identity with stolen features. With the addition of the algorithm, it makes things harder for a lot of creative minds to be seen unless that person is already well known and other shallow things. Instagram is way too corporate and too toxic these days. Even Instagram should not be use for business. This is a company run by Meta (Facebook), and Meta has such a very bad business practices and legal problems. How can people think they can use Instagram and Facebook for business when both companies have way too many business problems and legal problems? Whoever thinks these platforms are good for business really has been misinformed. Even relying on these platforms for everything is so cheap.

No user on IG and FB is benefitting off these platforms. The only ones who are benefiting it are the jerk owner who is also a criminal and the criminal shareholders. It is all about profits to them! Nothing else! Instagram and Facebook are making profits off of ads, data, the users, etc. Meanwhile, the users are too busy chasing after popularity, numbers, and other high school level garbage that are being encouraged by the company. People are being too distracted by social media that gives them nothing but an online shallow world or a fantasy world. Social media is not revolutionizing anything. It is not making the world a better place. And meanwhile, the real world is in deep trouble; and how many people are very concern about it? Not too many! People need to stop being so positive about Instagram and think that the company is much different than its parent company Facebook. Both of them share the same harsh policies! Just recently, Instagram had to pay a fine in Ireland because it was caught collecting Irish children's data! How sick that is?!

Looks like Glass is iPhone or iPad only. Not even Mac desktop.

Another black eye for Instagram. TikTok is now rolling out Photo Mode. Giving IG a taste of their own medicine. But, I get the feelin' TikTok will probably be successful at it since they aren't abandoning and pissing-off their base.


TikTok has the critical mass of users too.

Honestly, anyone who claims they actually WANT something as vile as Zuckerberg's AI to brainwash them, it discredits the person to the upmost degree.

And it's no surprise that, like happened in 2018, the anti-Vero and pro-influencer-Instragrammers (brainwashers) are coming out in force to defend IG now that people are leaving the platform in droves.

I couldn't be happier on Vero, the interface / apps are wonderful, the community interaction is brilliant, and organic growth is once again a reality, and non-photographers are now hoping on there, so most of what Pat said in his "review" is a bunch of FUD.