There has been much discussion lately on the detrimental impact of spending too much time on social media. However, the New York Public Library has recently developed a way to use social media to foster a love of reading. The library partnered with advertising and creative agency Mother to develop Instagram versions of classic books, dubbed Insta Novels. According to a statement, the aim is “to make some of the world’s most classic pieces of literature more accessible to the masses.”
The Insta Novels use Instagrams ‘stories’ function to create books. Specially designed graphics and animations accompany the text. The Insta Novel begins with animated graphics, which are then replaced by scrolling text. Readers can pause the story at any time and read at their own pace.
Most Instagram story posts are only viewable for 24 hours after their initial upload. However, the Insta Novels are archived in the Library’s Instagram ‘highlights’, and so can be accessed at any time. The first Insta Novel is Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland. Up next is The Yellow Wallpaper, by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis. Readers can also download the New York Public Library’s e-reader app SimplyE and read more stories on their smartphones. In addition, users can borrow e-books from the Library’s extensive collection.
Projects like the Insta Novel join a number of other innovations aimed at making greater use of social media for business or education purposes. At Springwise, we have also covered a media campaign that allows users to eat the food they see on Instagram and an app that blends augmented reality with social media.