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Risking your self-esteem with Instagram 'Date or Pass' polls

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Instagram stories is becoming the public version of Tinder with this recent trend.

We all know how social media trends come and go, especially when it involves Instagram stories.

Just a few months ago, our Instagram stories were taken over by quiz-like templates and bingo charts that had us sharing our current moods and preferences.

However, Instagram stories may be treading into murky waters with what seems to be an up and coming trend for some Singaporean youths with "Date or Pass" polls.

When Instagram released Polls last year, most used the interactive feature as a useful decision-making tool for their daily lives.

But with "Date or Pass" polls in the picture, people are starting to use the feature for a more shallow purpose. It is almost like a public Tinder, where you will get to vote on how dateable or attractive a person is based on their featured picture.

It typically starts like this: a user will post a story update and ask their followers to direct message (DM) them if they are willing to be featured in the "Date or Pass" poll. When consent has been given, the polls are posted online for the public to judge.

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Followers are encouraged to cast their votes on the "Date or Pass" poll.
PHOTO CREDIT: INSTAGRAM SCREENSHOTS 

Simply tap on "Date" or Pass" in the poll and congratulations, you have successfully participated in the voting process.  The most embarrassing part? The results are revealed instantaneously. The numbers are very 'in your face', and the percentages do not lie.

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Voters can decide if the featured profile should get a stamp of approval…or not.
PHOTO CREDIT: INSTAGRAM SCREENSHOTS

It may be a growing trend on Instagram now, but I simply fail to understand the logic behind it. For those who voluntarily reply to these Instagram stories, nothing much can be said since consent has been given readily. 

If the results from the polls are relatively positive and you like getting a temporary ego boost, it's perfectly understandable. I mean, who does not like instant validation? 

But let's be honest here. Some users probably would not give their consent to be featured and judged by the public unless they already expect to be rated positively. 

Well, what happens when things do not pan out as expected? 

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Rejection may be harsh for some.
PHOTO CREDIT: INSTAGRAM SCREENSHOTS

Getting approval from others mean everything to our vulnerable generation. But there are some youths out there who are quietly struggling with self-esteem and insecurities. Getting rejected publicly may not help them to deal with their issues.

Tinder may be as superficial, but at the very least, rejections are not broadcasted for the rest of the world to mock at.

As such, I make a plea to the rest of our generation – please make wise decisions. Think before you post, vote or do anything online.

What are the possible consequences? Will my actions hurt someone? Should I support this or not?

Remember, your entertainment may be at the cost of someone else's pain. Maybe it is time for us to make the right choices, not just the popular ones.

BANNER PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTH.SG/GRAY CHUA