Instagram’s Graveyard Shift (The New York Times)


“The #nightshift hashtag is especially well populated by the armed professions and the healing ones,” writes Associate Professor of English Jeff Sharlet in a New York Times opinion piece on the use of Instagram by the graveyard shift.

Reflecting the moods of those who work while most people sleep, the pictures are all over the map, from desperate to resigned to humorous and even rebellious, writes Sharlet.

“There are the warehouse workers who snap themselves letting a wisp of marijuana smoke slip from between their lips, little Instagram rebellions,” he writes. “There are the soldiers and sailors pulling a night shift for no good reason other than orders, photographing themselves and their comrades on the verge of sleep or already under. Cops in noirish black and white, their pictures framed to show a bit of badge. And nurses. A lot of nurses. Close up, arm’s length, forced smiles, dead eyes. Scroll through #nightshift, and you’ll see some saints among them and some whose hands you hope will be more alive in an emergency than their ashen faces.”

Read the full opinion piece, published 1/22/15 by The New York Times.

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