It also gives you a chance to see what your friends are doing, and only once you’ve posted your own candid photo can you unlock theirs. To an extent, it stifles at least some of the pressure to stage or curate your online life.
Posting five hours late while you’re out doing something fun would be an atrocity, for example.
BeReal: Currently one of the most downloaded apps in Australia
“Often I’m just in bed whenever it goes off, and I guess that’s half the beauty of it,” Emma told The Feed.
Emma Hilton has been using ‘BeReal’ for a month and says the “low-stakes” app gives her authentic glimpses into the lives of her friends. Credit: Supplied
“You go your whole day doing really fun things and being outside, and then you lay down to scroll on TikTok and that’s when it goes off,” she added, laughing.
“Occasionally, if I’ve been in bed too much, I’ll wait until I’m making dinner but it’s never anything too interesting.”
“It’s low effort and occupies a very small part of my brain and day. You kind of dip in and dip out,” Emma said.
Can it stand the test of time?
“Authenticity is the great myth of social media, nothing on social media is authentic,” Mr Leaver told The Feed.
“I appreciate that people treat it more like a photo-a-day challenge because it would be very boring to look at otherwise.”
What does human nature tell us?
“There’s nothing much the app can do for that – we’re social creatures built to seek status and community. And even with restrictions, we’ll likely find a way to seek status and community in the ways that we present ourselves,” Ms King said in a statement to The Feed.
“But one upshot of the app is that it might prompt people to consider how it is they are spending their time … If you’re concerned about the substance of your BeReal ‘Memories’ perhaps that’s a call to re-evaluate how you’d prefer your life to look?”
Refreshing … for now
“The only way that it will continue to be relevant is to slowly build the sort of tools that every other platform has,” he said.
Tim Hill on BeReal and Instagram. Credit: Supplied.
Tim Hill, a user of the app since June and a social media analytics app founder by trade, said the founders need to be comfortable with not being number one if they want to stay true to its cause. Otherwise, it will wander into the space of its competitors and lose its core message.
The Feed has sought comment from BeReal.