There have been countless studies on the harmful effects of social media on mental health, especially on adolescents.
And yet, most of us just can’t leave social media. Even if it makes us feel bad about ourselves.
The constant comparisons of our lives with the highlights people post on Facebook and Instagram are ridiculously out of balance since the majority of users on these platforms don’t post unflattering photos of themselves, or share their sad or bad feelings. news with others.
Enter Inpathy, a new type of social network – a “healthy” network. Ziarekenya Smith founded the company in 2015 with a mission to revolutionize the way people use social media “by making it more transparent, normalizing moods and recreating the human experience. The end goal is to bring more well-being to the world of social networks.
Smith began his career in digital art and design. Despite the early successes, he didn’t think the work was as fulfilling as he had hoped. He started to experience symptoms of anxiety and depression and found himself wanting to express those feelings on social media. But he stopped.
âThe unwritten rules of social are that if life isn’t perfect, you don’t talk about it,â Smith recalls. âSo I kept my feelings to myself. But I asked myself: why was this the case?
The concept for Detroit Inpathy was born out of the pain and struggle he felt. It was also born out of Smith’s belief that the current structure of social media is not sustainable in the long run.
âIt’s great for making money but not great for true human well-being,â Smith told TechCrunch. âIn my eyes, we need to fix the core. “
Inpathy strives to provide a more balanced life experience, not just perfection. It aims to give people the opportunity to share their raw feelings, the good, the bad and the bad.
âEveryone’s going to have their ups and downs, and you can appreciate someone’s rise more if you see the timeline of their ups and downs,â Smith said. “We all love the story of the underdog.”
In a twist, Inpathy users share their stories or content not through pictures or written words, but via audio or video, delivering what Smith hopes will be an immersive experience.
Inpathy will ask a user how they are feeling and this mood scale is visible to other users, who can even filter by mood, including “angry”, “sad” and “happy”.
âWe want to normalize emotions and create a transparent system,â Smith said. âIt has to be transparent so that we’re all on the same playing field. So people can realize, ‘It’s not just me. It’s normal.'”
There are no follow or add buttons. Inpathy enables two-way communication allowing users to become “friends”.
” We are not Robots. Whether you are rich or poor, you feel happiness and pain regardless of your status, âSmith said. âThat’s what the human is. Inpathy shows people that it’s okay to be human.
The site has a low tolerance for trolls and bullies, banning them for life. The idea of ââsomeone having the guts to share something on Inpathy, and then being trolled to the point of being afraid to open up again, motivated the policy.
For now, Smith is raising money through crowdfunding and basically seed money until he finds the right investor.
âWe don’t want to feel like we have to add features just to impress investors,â he said. âThe view is very important. “
“Right now, if we look at the media landscape, we use YouTube for TV, TikTok for shorts, Instagram for photos, Twitter for news and trends, Facebook for entertainment, LinkedIn for business, Headspace for meditation, Tinder for dating, âadds Smith. “But where do you go for the raw experience, and to be just yourself?”
Hopefully Inpathy, if Smith succeeds.