Muchly greetings. It has been a while since I posted. This is because I’ve been doing all sorts of mega-exciting things. Wrestling sharks, fighting off hundreds of horny women, inventing a perpetual-motion machine to solve the energy crisis, skiing in volcanoes etc. So you can see why I had little time to post.
I promised to give an overview of my experiences with Vero.
Vero is a social media app which has been around for a few years but has seen increasing interest recently from people irritated with Instagram. Especially their hiding your friend’s posts and bombarding you with ads and recommendations instead. Plus they have deliberately moved away from their original still image focus towards TikTok style short videos. This has left those of us who take photography and other visual arts feeling a bit homeless.
My experiences are with the Android app. This is still in Beta, which means it may be slow, buggy or incompatible with older phones. My cheap Android phone is relatively new and I have had no problems. But I would recommend turning off ‘background refresh’ on this app in your phone settings. I have seen reviews that suggestes the app drains battery otherwise. However – if you do this it can be a bit annoying that it will take a while for your feed to catch up if you have not opened Vero for a few days.
Vero has no adverts. So how do they make money? Well at the moment Vero is still free because it is being supported by seed capital but their aim is to eventually charge a small subscription fee for new users. $1 per month is the rumoured fee. But those who set up an account before this happens will remain free. So even if you are only considering it, it might be worth registering now, just in case.
I am not interested in debating the alleged ‘shady’ background of Vero’s founder. Meta are no better. (Any comments attempting to draw me into this debate will be deleted. I did my own research and made my decision.)
Because Vero does not bombard you with adverts or suggestions, when you first set up, your feed will be empty. This can be a bit disconcerting. Also there is no real ‘discover’ feature but the Vero front page does put a few useful links (new users etc).
So, to find accounts to follow, you will need to search hashtags of subjects of interest, or people you think might already be on there. My username is @artyplantsman
My advice is to post a few pictures yourself so that your feed is not empty, before following other users. I won’t personally follow back someone with no posts and I suspect I am not alone in that.
Things I like about Vero:
- The user interface looks gorgeous. If you post a photo it will tweak the surrounding background to a matching or complimentary shade.
- I find the whole thing very peaceful and inspiring.
- The quality of images people post is astounding. This can also count as a downside if you are prone to impostor syndrome like me 🙂
- You are not restricted to square format.
- Images are not compressed. Clicking on a photo will bring it up at full resolution and you can zoom in on details.
- People on Vero seem genuinely lovely, creative types. I have not seen any trolls or many ‘influencers’.
- You can post links! But, even better:
- You can directly post snippets of music, films, books, games, apps you are enjoying by searching in the relevant post category. This seems amazingly comprehensive – and I have some quite obscure musical tastes.
- When you post a picture the ap will interrogate the image automatically and suggest a list of good hashtags to select from. This is a real boon to those of us who struggle with finding hashtags. And it is AMAZINGLY accurate.
- As a result, I am getting regularly 20+ likes on posts even though I have a tiny number of followers. I have nearly a thousand followers on Instagram but ‘likes’ are typically only around 50-80 per post.
Reasons why it might not be for you, or why you should use Instagram as well:
- Vero seems, so far, to be occupied by serious creatives. So pictures of your dogs, hamsters, reticulated pythons, or what you had for lunch, might not fit here as well as they do on Instagram.
- You are far less likely to find people you know in real life. Family members etc. So if this is important to you then continue with Instagram. For me this is a plus 🙂
- If you are aiming to sell your work then Vero is not likely to be where your customers are. You will still need a presence on a more widely used platform.
- I suspect when you follow a lot of accounts then the lack of background refresh will become annoying and you might want to switch it on again.
Two of my posts with backgrounds chosen by the App:
Your selection of things to post:
The process of posting a book recommendation. Select ‘Book’ from the above page and search for your book title:
Select the book and add a comment:
Note you can select from a number of categories at the top. I selected ‘ Recommend’.
Then you can choose from four categories of people to share with. This seems useful but is a bit confusing to me, categories include ‘friends’ acquaintances’ and public/all followers:
This is how it will appear in my follower’s feeds.
Music works the same way but will include an excerpt to play. Here is one of my posts and also you can see that my follower Nora has been listening to some Dylan: