On New Year’s Eve, @nicole and I hopped in the car and drove to the hospital knowing our little girl was on the way. At 5am on 1/1/18 little Freya Systrom came into this world. Mom and baby are both doing great now that we’re home and settled. I never knew how much I could love until I held little Freya for the first time. Special thanks to our family and friends who are around to help (and to @Dolly who is VERY excited to have a little sister!)
I hope everyone has enjoyed a restful holiday season. One of my favorite holiday traditions is cooking with @nicole. This year, we added to that tradition and created a #thingsorganizedneatly with some of our baking supplies, ingredients, and a few of our most tasty cookie creations! I hope you all have a warm and wonderful holiday season, enjoying your favorite traditions, and creating new ones, too.
This week, everyone at Instagram came together for our semi-annual All Hands meeting to celebrate everything we’ve accomplished in 2017 and prepare for 2018. We’ve made a lot of progress this last year, helping our community strengthen relationships with the people and passions they care most about with products like live broadcasting, shopping, face filters, a polling sticker, live co-broadcasting, and our initiatives to enhance kindness on and off the platform. I’m so proud of the team for their hard work, and I’m excited to find new, innovative ways to bring people together in 2018.
Now you can follow hashtags on Instagram! Following a hashtag is just like following a friend. To get started, search for a topic you’re interested in or tap on a hashtag from any post. When you find a hashtag you like, open the hashtag page and tap the follow button. You’ll begin seeing top posts from that hashtag in your feed and the latest stories in your stories bar. One of my favorite hashtags is #bookstagram. I’ve recently started posting about what I’m reading to connect with other book lovers. I just finished The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, an investigation into our ability to predict future events. I’m excited to learn what other people are reading by following #bookstagram.
I’ve been lucky to be able to travel to beautiful places around the world on my bike. Last year I rode around Utah and the Grand Staircase National monument. We’re so lucky to have these places and if we don’t protect them it’s possible we won’t be able to share them with our children. Last week this administration ordered a reduction of the size of this monument by 50% - an unprecedented move for such a fragile place. Let’s not take for granted the things we as a country have fought so hard to earn and protect. The environment is something @nicole and I care about deeply. I hope, as a nation, we can find a way to preserve and protect our country’s beauty for generations to come.
At Instagram, it’s our mission to help people strengthen relationships with the people and passions they care about. One of the ways we accomplish this is by building products that help people share their moments and express themselves. Today we’re introducing two new tools that let you hold on to your favorite moments from Instagram Stories and share them in new ways. With Stories Highlights, now you can group the stories you’ve shared into highlights and feature them on your profile, where they will stay up as long as you want. And to help you build highlights, your stories will now automatically save into a private Stories Archive so you can easily relive them whenever you want. I’m so excited to see how people use these new tools. Photo by @yelldesign
Tonight at the #BreakthroughAwards I had the honor of presenting Joanne Chory with an award. Her work exploring plant hormones’ roles in growth and development may help scientists understand how growth processes are regulated in other organisms as well. Congrats Joanne and to all the other honorees as well!
Last month, I posted my first #bookstagram. It was so fun to connect with other people over The Innovator’s Dilemma, that I thought I’d post another. In January, @nicole and I are expecting a baby girl, so we’re spending this month getting ready for her. I think the term is “nesting”. Since Nicole and I are major bookworms, one of the things we’re enjoying most is discovering children’s books. So far, my favorite has been The Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires. The story follows a little girl as she tries to build the most magnificent thing. As all entrepreneurs do, she tries and fails over and over, before getting it right. It’s an inspiring story about creativity and persistence that resonated with me. What are your favorite children’s books?! Suggestions please!
Today we’re announcing that there are 25M businesses on Instagram! One of those businesses is @Shinola, a company that the Instagram leadership team visited this week. Shinola is known for their watches, but what you might not know is that they have a very meaningful mission. They were founded to create jobs in Detroit–a deeply important cause in a deeply meaningful place. Driving around the city of Detroit, it was stunning and emotional to see rows of empty blocks and abandoned buildings where a city bustling with life once stood. Shinola is committed to helping rebuild Detroit through making beautifully crafted products by people who live in the city. I’m proud that Shinola, like many other businesses, uses Instagram to strengthen their relationships with customers and to tell their inspiring story.
Yesterday, the Instagram leadership team spent time together in Detroit, Michigan. While here we’re learning from local business leaders with similar values. Detroit is at the center of many of the economic and social issues facing the US right now. Spending some time here gives us a perspective to build a better IG for the entire world. Last night was all about connecting with each other, and one of my favorite ways to connect is over a great meal. I’m so thankful for my teammates and the time we get to spend together learning from others in new places.
Today is #GivingTuesday, a day to help others by giving your time, donations, or your voice to the causes that matter to you most. This year, @nicole and I are donating to the San Francisco SPCA, because of the joy that @dolly brings to our lives every day. The SF SPCA is committed to fighting for the welfare of animals in San Francisco and beyond. They are one of the oldest humane societies in the United States, and the founders of the no-kill movement. As a result of their efforts, San Francisco has the lowest euthanasia rate of any major city in the United States. If you want to learn more about their mission, you can click the link in my bio. I’m proud to support the work they’re doing, and so is this happy pup. #SFSPCA
This Thanksgiving I’ll be up in Lake Tahoe with my family. It’s one of my favorite holidays because it’s a moment to step back and be thankful. This year I’m especially thankful for Nicole and our baby girl who will join us in January. As for packing I’ve made it a bit more entertaining by trying my first #thingsorganizedneatly No matter where you are or how you’re celebrating: Happy Thanksgiving!!!