The IRS Has Wisely Steered Clear of Instagram

The IRS’ use of social media has always seemed sort of awkward to me.  There’s the IRS Facebook account, for example.  Completely bare bones.  A couple pictures of IRS national headquarters, a blurb about this not being an official source of information about the IRS, and links to the official IRS homepage.   Zzzzzzzzzz.

Yes, I know it has 38,000 likes.  But you have to wonder if these people really “like” the IRS, or if they are acknowledging the IRS in the only way that Facebook allows, there being no “unlike” button.

The IRS doesn’t have an Instagram account.  Their complete social media portfolio includes Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, and IRS2Go, their mobile app (which I’m not sure really counts as social media).  But thank goodness they don’t; there is nothing really visual about what they do.  One look at an tax law firm Facebook page will confirm that.  What kinds of pictures would they post? Suits and cubicles, Friday potlucks, maybe some of the stuff they have seized and sold at auction?

Just for fun, I looked at some of the 46,738 photos with an IRS hashtag and they are nothing special.  Most of the #IRS posts are advertisements.  The second most common, as far as I can tell, are pictures that have nothing to do with the Internal Revenue Service.  Maybe IRS means something else in another country, that’s what I’m thinking.  Lots of Ford Mustangs – maybe a special edition or some fancy tuning.  By far the best ones are the memes.  There is one meme of a guy sitting in his car with a tethered cheetah sitting shotgun that says “When you get your tax return and start buying unnecessary sh*t.”  There are a few memes of skeletons “waiting for their tax refund” or “waiting at the IRS office.”  There is a cartoon in the style of Far Side (accredited to “Reynolds”) that shows a couple sitting at the IRS office.  The sign says “THE IRS” and the guy turns to his wife and says, “Like the sign says . . . it’s all THEIRS.”  My favorite, probably because I can identify with it best, is a screenshot of a cell phone displaying the IRS toll free phone number and the call timer at 50 minutes.  The caption: “This is why no one likes the #IRS…”  Thank you for that @caitlinmaguffee.  It helps to have a good sense of humor this time of year.