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Where did common sense go?

It's a weird feeling, to have your picture taken in the middle of the street when you have absolutely no idea you're being photographed...  

I thought I would actually feel ecstatic when I would see my outfit shown off in some Instagram account dedicated to real street styles. Turned out it was quite the opposite.

Last Saturday, while I was enjoying a rainy day of shopping around Paris to find the perfect dress for a friend's wedding, something quite weird happened to me. As I was leaving the store I'd spend most of my morning in, someone snapped a picture of me getting rained on while I was on my phone trying to figure out my way back home. The funny thing is I didn't realize it until later when I was having lunch with my boyfriend and a friend messaged me: "Isn't it you?", with a picture attached. 

Indeed it was... 

What spooked me is when I realized that it was the same outfit I was wearing on that particular day. Either I had been guilty of outfit repeating or this picture was taken on the same day. Examining it closely with my boyfriend, we soon realized that I must have been photographed at least 30 minutes prior. It felt weird. And it didn't take long for other people to share the same picture they have seen on someone's Instagram I didn't even know. Turns out the account, that had taken my photo and decided to share it to Instagram,  without my consent I might add, was 124K followers, content creator and pilates instructor Alice Pilate. 

Should I have felt flattered? 

Spoiler alert, I didn't. In fact, it was quite a strange feeling, a sensation of intrusion, and voyeurism. It felt weird. 

What really struck me was the fact that she was facing me when she took the picture, she didn't hide my face, she didn't wait for me to turn around so she could capture my outfit from the back. She simply stood in front of me, snapped a picture and left, without acknowledging me. Truth be told, I kind of felt used.


So let me ask you, where did common sense go? When did we say, as a society, it's okay to photograph or videotape random people on the street without them knowing? 

Why is it so easy to hide behind our screens? Do our phones actually serve as a barrier, a protector so we can do or say whatever we want on the internet? Because I didn't get the notice saying so. Is it really that hard to come up to people afterwards and say: "Hey, I love your outfit, I took this picture, do you mind if I share it with my 100K followers on Instagram?". I'm honestly asking... 

If you're wondering, I did message her when I saw the picture, saying "Hi, it's me in the picture", waiting for her to respond to say a bit more about this whole exchange, but obviously my DM must have gotten lost in the ocean of messages from her community. 

It didn't end there though. 

Later that day, another friend shared another Instagram story with me. Another account, another 100 K-something audiences, and yet another Instagram story with my picture, nicely taken by @alicepilate. I'm sorry, where is my mention? 

I did message the account @parisiensinparis, saying again: "It's me in the picture!"... No response. 

While I didn't capture the outfit was wearing on that particular day, I had been wearing a similar version of this outfit, as pictured above. Please enjoy it, as I have decided to share it on my own terms. 

I really thought that I would feel great the day I would end up on this particular account. I didn't imagine I would feel so frustrated with the whole situation. But on the bright side, more than one person liked my picture on that very first rainy weekend of February. 

And I guess I had my 24 hours of Instagram fame. 


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