‘How Instagram ruined the Great Outdoors’ is an article this month by Christopher Ketcham at NewRepublic.com highlighting the problem of Instagram or social media influencers. These are ones who make money, often lots of money, by being out often on public lands and national parks and trying to get that perfect photo that will go straight to their bank account. Some people are not as careful in their endeavors as they should be.
One Idaho man who wishes to remain anonymous wants to challenge these with his own Instagram account entitled “Public Lands Hate You.” On KVNU’s For the People program on Friday, he said that over the last five years or so he has noticed a marked increase in the amount of abuse of public lands. It is manifest in people carving their names into trees, leaving trash and a host of different issues.
“It was after a backpacking trip last summer with some friends that I had run across numerous of these offenses against the public lands. I was fed up with it and I spent the three-hour ride home stewing over it and thinking about it. I finally said, ‘I’ve got all these pictures of people doing these things, I’ll just put them on Instagram and at least that will allow me to kind of vent some of my frustration about what I had seen.’”
He said two months ago he had around 500 followers but thanks, in part, to online publicity his site now has about 43,000. He said he’s highlighting this problem because he does not want to see our public lands destroyed or see a loss of access to them because of the behavior of some people.
AUDIO: Interview with the man behind Instagram account “Public Lands Hate You”