BeReal is really real—fo real

Be-Real, diving into the nature of this new social media hit!


Isabel Marquez Flores

The power of BeReal captured in this picture featuring Lydia Harms, Claudia Molatore and Isabel Márquez.

For two minutes each day, this simple app is a mundane collection of everyday scenes you would never see on any of the other big-name social media apps: Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok; BeReal is about getting a surprise notification and capturing the beauty of the moment. But does it?

On a couch. Feet. A laptop’s display. Oysters for $1.50 at happy hour. A blurry image of an urban street bordered by trees. A cat is dozing off. Legs on the sand on a neon beach blanket. What features do all of these have in common? These are standard materials for the BeReal app, the only effective social networking platform, because of its paradoxical ability to be both profoundly boring and transcendentally enjoyable.

For those unaware, the BeReal app forces its users to take a front- and back-facing camera photo of whatever they are doing at that moment by simultaneously sending them a push notification once daily at a random time. Posts vanish the next day, and the only grid of old photographs you can scroll through is your own; BeReal refers to them as “Memories.” 

BeReal is a throwback to Facebook galleries, Instagram stories, and Snaps that only last a day—the difference is the time spent curating your product. So many people are caught up in hysteria about what in their life could go online, and how pointless is that? Plenty of things shouldn’t be on the internet, but a snapshot of your grocery list has no glamor and no harm; that’s the point. 

Santiago, a junior studying at Wilsonville says “Be real is the best! Unlike on Instagram or other social media you can´t edit the picture and you appear as you are with only two minutes to take it, you can´t change where you are or what you´re doing”.  Giulia, another junior, describes the app as “fresh and innovative, it’s a whole new way of social networking. The fact that you can´t see what others have posted until you post something keeps you always active, it’s clever!”

Words are words, and actions are actions. Though most titles out in the ether give false information, BeReal is one of the most down-to-earth social media platforms. There is little superior value to posting flashy photos online to get a few one-liners from people who put in about a 1/100th of the time into their remark, as opposed to sharing in person. It’s just for people to put little time into reacting to your posts; that is how it’s designed to be. Sure there are a plethora of people that wouldn’t get to see your smiling face across long distances, which is the inherent purpose of being able to share information with anyone in seconds. Still, that should be kept to a direct message sharing. 

We are all human, and the point of social media shouldn’t be to surpass our flaws. BeReal is taking a step in the more personable direction, sharing the unseen, culturally undesired, and real part of our day.