Instagram

Get the free app for iOS, Android, or Windows Phone

Welcome to the Instagram blog! See how Instagrammers are capturing and sharing the world's moments through photo and video features, user spotlights, tips and news from Instagram HQ.

Photoset

current events, chernobyl, Location Feature,

Remembering Chernobyl (Чорнобиль)

To view more photos and videos from Pripyat, explore the Pripyat (Припять) and Chernobyl location pages, or browse the #pripyat and #chernobyl hashtags.

On this day 28 years ago, a catastrophic nuclear accident at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine resulted in a huge plume of radioactive contamination and the relocation of more than 350,000 people. The Chernobyl disaster is one of only two nuclear accidents classified as a level seven on the International Nuclear Event Scale (the other being the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in 2011).

Chernobyl and the nearby town of Pripyat remain in the same state today as they were in April, 1986. Bold tourists and many Instagrammers have visited the still heavily contaminated site, sticking to an official route after it opened to the public in 2010. Russian Instagrammer Roman Palchenkov (@palchenkov) recently visited the site: “Being there, in the silence, darkness, and cold, and standing in the empty room of regular house, I was able to understand what a catastrophic nuclear disaster means for people and cities.”

Photoset

shakespeare's birthday, current events, stratford upon avon, william shakespeare, english literature, news,

Marking the 450th Anniversary of William Shakespeare’s Birth

For more photos from the sites of William’s Shakespeare life, explore the Shakespeare’s Birthplace, Globe Theater and Shakespeare’s Grave location pages.

Every year at the end of April, a celebration of the life and works of the great playwright William Shakespeare takes place in the market town of Stratford-upon-Avon, England. Shakespeare was born there in 1564 and cultural celebrations in Stratford’s streets, with entertainers, street performers and traditional Morris dancers, go back hundreds of years.

From his plays to his sonnets, Shakespeare’s extensive works have produced a legacy of characters, ideas, histories and, of course, words—it is thought he contributed more than 2,000 to the English language. His plays are a staple on many school curriculums, and continue to be reinterpreted on stage, rewritten in fiction and retold on screen.

The man himself is still very much a mystery and few details exist about his private life. Shakespeare married Anne Hathaway with whom he bore three children, before relocating to London to pursue his acting and writing career. He died at the age of 52 on April 23, 1616—a date which fell very near to his birthday in the same month (the exact date is unknown).

This year marks the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth and, on Saturday, a special procession will take place in Stratford, ending with celebrants laying flowers on Shakespeare’s grave in the Holy Trinity Church. The world-renowned Royal Shakespeare Company will also host a full program of shows.

Photoset

current events, litterati, Earth Day,

Doing Your Part on Earth Day with @litterati

For more of Jeff’s finds, follow @litterati on Instagram and contribute your own discoveries with the #litterati hashtag. To see more photos and videos from Earth Day celebrations around the world, browse the #earthday2014 and #earthday hashtags.

Spotting a piece of garbage in the woods during a walk with his young daughter sparked the inspiration for Jeff Kirshner’s project, @litterati.

"Seeing my daughter’s perplexed expression reminded me of when I was a kid at summer camp," explains Jeff. "Before our parents came to visit, our director made us each pick up five pieces of trash. So I thought, why not apply that same crowdsource­ cleaning model to the entire planet?"

Litterati introduces a social element to cleaning up garbage. The steps are simple:

  1. Find a piece of litter
  2. Photograph it with Instagram
  3. Add the “#litterati” hashtag
  4. Throw out, recycle or compost the litter

Your photo is then added to the digital landfill of cleaned-up garbage, and the people who see your photo in their feed are encouraged to participate as well.

To date, more than 40,000 pieces of garbage have been picked up across 45 countries. Visit litterati.org to learn more about where litter accumulates and what items are most commonly found.

Photoset

current events, Boston Marathon, Boston Strong,

Undaunted, Runners and Spectators Gather for the 2014 Boston Marathon

For more photos and videos from the 2014 Boston Marathon, browse the #bostonmarathon and #bostonstrong hashtags, explore the Boston Marathon Finish Line location page and follow @bostonmarathon on Instagram.

More than 35,000 runners and nearly half a million spectators turned out for the 118th annual Boston Marathon today. Despite last year’s bombings at the finish line, top athletes from 91 countries convened in Boston again this year. Family, friends and well-wishers—undeterred by last year’s tragedy—lined the 26.2 mile route from Hopkinton to Boston to cheer and document the event.

Rita Jeptoo of Kenya, with a time of 2:18:57, took first in the women’s category. With a time of 2:08:37, Meb Keflezighi took first place among men, the first American to do so since 1983.

Photoset

current events, påskris, Easter, sweden,

Celebrating Easter in Sweden with Påskris

For a look at how Easter is celebrated in Sweden and across Northern Europe, browse the #påskris hashtag.

In the spring, florists, markets and city centers in Sweden display twigs and trees sprouting some unexpected blooms: feathers.

Påskris, or “Easter twigs,” refer to birch twigs that have been decorated after being cut and tied together. These Easter trees, especially when displayed in the home, are adorned with colorful feathers, eggs and more.

Beginning in the 17th century, Christian Swedes used påskris—without the feathers—to strike one another as a reminder of Jesus’s suffering. During the 18th century, however, påskris transformed into a more vibrant (and less painful) tradition and have spread to other Nordic countries.

Påskris are placed in water-filled vases and provide bursts of color that Sweden’s spring cannot supply due to its harsh and lengthy winters. If one is lucky enough to find twigs with some early blooms, however, the leaves grow and provide natural color to the påskris, bringing the new life of spring into the home. The more courageous locals will also bring these bursts of color outside the home by adorning the trees that line streets and city centers with colorful feathers and decorations to celebrate Easter and welcome the spring.

Photoset

Coachella, coachella2014, current events, music, photo feature,

Instagrammers Capture Coachella

For more photos and videos from the festival, follow @coachella and @coachellaastronaut on Instagram and explore Coachella’s location pages: Coachella, Main Stage and Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival. You can also browse the #coachella hashtag.

Last weekend and again next weekend, music fans head to Indio, California, for the annual Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival (@coachella). There, against a backdrop of desert sunsets and an iconic ferris wheel, up-and-coming performers and established acts alike will take the stage. To see Coachella from the perspective of the performers, follow these artists on Instagram:

This year’s festival will also feature the Coachella Astronaut (@coachellaastronaut), a roaming art installation created for Coachella by Poetic Kinetics (@poetickinetics), a group of artists based in Los Angeles.

Photoset

Cosmonautics Day, russia, current events,

Celebrating Cosmonautics Day (День Космона́втики) in Russia

For more photos from Cosmonautics Day, explore the Памятник Гагарину (Yuri Gargarin Monument) and аллея Космонавтов (Cosmonauts Alley) location pages.

Every year on April 12, Russia celebrates Cosmonautics Day: a commemorative event to remember the achievements of Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin in 1961. The 27-year-old circled Earth in the Vostok 1 (Восток-1) spacecraft for one hour and 48 minutes, making the first manned space flight and marking a new chapter in space exploration.

On Saturday, a ceremonial procession in Moscow will visit a number of important commemorative landmarks including Gagarin’s statue, then his grave in the Red Square’s Kremlin Wall Necropolis and through Cosmonauts Alley before concluding in Novodevichy Cemetery.

More recently, the celebration on April 12 has spread to communities worldwide as “Yuri’s Night”—an occasion to inspire public interest in space exploration.

Photoset

current events, day of silence, glsen, glsen day of silence, lgbt,

Observing Day of Silence on Instagram

For more from the 19th annual National Day of Silence, browse the #dayofsilence hashtag and visit the GLSEN website.

Friday marked the 19th Annual Day of Silence, a movement in schools and universities to call attention to the issue of LGBT bullying and harassment among youth.

Organized by the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN), the day is marked by teens spending the day in silence as a symbol of the “silencing effect of anti-LGBT bias and behavior.” The organization estimates that hundreds of thousands of LGBT and allied students at more than 8,000 schools participated in the event this year, many wearing shirts, stickers or pins to explain their reason for silence.

Photoset

zoo lovers day, animals, current events, zoos,

Celebrating Zoo Lover’s Day

To view more photos and videos of Zoo Lover’s Day, browse the #zoolovers hashtag on Instagram.

Happy Zoo Lover’s Day! Since the London Zoological Gardens were established in 1828, zoos have been a place to marvel at some of the most fascinating wild animals in the world, all in one place. Many zoos, however, have developed broader and more ambitious goals around education and conservation, engaging visitors in deeper ways with the issues that animals and their habitats may face in the wild.

Interested in learning more about zoos through the day-to-day lives of the animals they care for? Be sure to follow these zoos on Instagram:

Photoset

march madness, current events,

March Madness’s Final Teams Compete

For more photos and videos from the competition, browse the #marchmadness hashtag and explore the AT&T Stadium (men’s final) and Bridgestone Arena (women’s final) location pages.

After two weeks of grueling competition, the pool of competitors in the NCAA Basketball Tournament has been whittled down to just four teams on the men’s and women’s sides.

Tonight, the first of the men’s “Final Four” will compete for the right to advance, followed by the women’s games tomorrow. The winning teams will earn a trip to their respective championship matches.

To get a behind-the-scenes peek at the final games on Instagram, be sure to follow these participating players, teams and broadcasters:

Players:

  • Frank Kaminsky, Wisconsin Men’s Basketball - @fskpart3
  • Bria Hartley, Connecticut Women’s Basketball - @breezyyy14
  • Julius Randle, Kentucky Men’s Basketball - @juliusrandle30
  • Chiney Ogwumike, Stanford Women’s Basketball - @chiney321
  • Shabazz Napier, Connecticut Men’s Basketball - @shabazznap13r
  • Kayla McBride, Notre Dame Women’s Basketball - @kaymac_21

Teams, Schools and Coaches:

Media:

  • Kenny Smith, basketball analyst - @thejetontnt
  • ESPN, sports television channel - @espn
  • Dick Vitale, basketball sportscaster - @dickiev_espn