An authentic take on BeReal

Delving into BeReal’s real purpose


Avni Gandhi

BeReal isn’t as real as it makes it out to be

Avni Gandhi and Manas Kottakota

BeReal, a new photo-sharing app, has gained popularity among Gen Z in mid 2022. One notification is sent out each day to let users know they have two minutes to post, but users can also post a “late” BeReal if they miss the two minute window. BeReal’s intention is to encourage users to be more authentic by posting unfiltered photos of themselves. Users share one front and one back view photo to give visitors a 360-degree perspective of what’s happening in their lives.

Due to the app’s no likes, no followers and no filter policy, senior Arti Gnanasekar feels much less pressure to post in comparison to other platforms. According to Gnanasekar, BeReal allows her to see what her friends are doing without filtering out important posts, and she explains how she finds conversation starters by viewing what her friends post.

Avni Gandhi

“It’s one of those social media platforms [where] there is no negative stigma around it,” Gnanasekar said. “You post once a day and it’s an everyday thing. And it’s not part of a serious routine, so I don’t feel pressured [to post], compared to Instagram or Tik Tok.”

For senior Anusha Sainarayanan, BeReal is far less addictive than other social media apps because of the one post limit. She enjoys being able to see authentic photos of her friends taken in the moment rather than filtered and edited photos on other major platforms like Instagram.

“I normally just look at the posts that my friends are posting, but on Instagram, I spend a lot of time looking at influencer’s posts or people that I don’t necessarily follow,” Sainarayanan said. “I [think] BeReal is better in terms of time efficiency for me, because I’m only looking at the people that I follow rather than random people.”  

Contrastingly, junior Advait Ramakrishnan believes that posting on BeReal is less meaningful than posting on Instagram because everyone is encouraged to post on BeReal once a day. He claims that BeReal does not accomplish its purpose, because users tend to not post right when the notification comes out, but he acknowledges that having to post within a certain time span is unique compared to other social media platforms. 

“[It’s] cool to see what everyone’s doing at a certain time, because [although] people portray their lives in different ways and most people [post] late, it’s still interesting to see what people are doing at that moment,” Ramakrishnan said. 

Sainarayanan admits that she sometimes waits past the two minute window to capture a more interesting part of her day to portray her life as more exciting and entertaining. She says that BeReal has become tedious to her over the course of her use because it can be repetitious at times.

“The excitement that I once had is not really there anymore,” Sainarayanan said. “I just kind of feel like it’s a chore almost to be real.”