Our digital world is increasingly visual. The increase in bandwidth and the extension of the 4G transmission capacity has done that smartphones produce more and more information in visual formats. Through applications such as Instagram, smartphones become vehicles for the creation, manipulation and immediate diffusion of images captured spontaneously. This productive capacity is no longer elitist, because it has been fully democratized: we all have a camera in our pocket, into our smartphone. The image is thus not only a means of expression, of prescription of senses, but a universal language, a natural and spontaneous way of relating to others.
And Instagram is even more for Social Sciences and Digital Humanities: it is an open window to see how our visual culture is socially and globally constructed, in local environments. Through the images published in this application we can see how the image of a city as Granada is constructed, how the vision of a city differs if the photographer is a resident or a tourist, which areas are the most interesting visually, what communities and social networks are created around interests that use the application to display them visually; i.e., we can observe cultural and spatio-temporal patterns, inequalities and social divisions, interactions and communications that characterize and configure any city.
In this work in development, and through a corpus of almost three million publications, with their respective images taken from the social network Instagram, the investigative potential of the application as a methodological tool to approach the social construction of the urban image is shown and, by extension, the construction of ‘glocal’ and urban visual culture.