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Weekend Humor: Instagram Releases Dining Filter; All Food Shots Are Instantly Deleted

by Julius Motal on 02/09/2013

Point taken.

Point taken.

Editor’s Note: Nothing in weekend humor is supposed to be taken seriously. So don’t.

We reported recently on how New York City restaurants are sick and tired of patrons taking nifty snapshots of their meals. There has been a substantial uptick in food photography, so much so that you can’t follow someone without getting at least one shot of an early-evening-late-afternoon snack. Realizing the potential PR-disaster, Instagram recently released the “Dining Filter” which will delete any food snapshots it detects.

Food photography is a bigger problem than most realize. Picture this: You’re on a date with a lovely (fe)male. Both of you were rather taken with the Academy Award-nominated film you just “saw”, and you’re now at the ritzy restaurant neither of you can afford. The orders are put in, and the food arrives. Just as you’re about to have spirited discussion about the film, (s)he pulls out an iPhandroid 6.3 Jelly Belly. “Oh my God,” (s)he says, “This looks scrumdiddlyumptious! My followers will absolutely love this!” The flash blinds you as you drop your fork, push your seat back, get up, and leave.

That’s happened to at least (n)one of us, and Instagram is aware of the problem. Just before restaurants began banning the practices of fauxtographers, Instagram noticed that its servers were full to the brim with shots of food. According to an internal memo, one Content Overseer said, “Holy sh*t. So. Many. Eggs.”

Once news broke in the New York Times about restaurants cracking down, Instagram’s chief executives scrambled to find a way to prevent further PR damage. According to John Matheson, an Instagram designer who asked to remain anonymous, “The order came from the CEO, ‘Get rid of all the f***ing eggs.’ as he slapped a pile of angry letters from restaurateurs on my desk.”

Matheson and his team developed an algorithm in a few hours that went live immediately. Instagram now has what’s known as the “Dining Filter” which will flash a skull and crossbones across the user’s screen if (s)he tries to upload dinner to the cloud.

In a strange twist, the filter will retroactively delete photos based on comments which led to billions of baby photos disappearing en masse after far too many posted, “Too cute! I could eat you up!”

At least the eggs are gone.

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