How to Know If Your Instagram Will Be Popular

Since we’ve already covered how to take the perfect selfie and how to get more Instagram followers, it stands to reason that the next step in achieving ultimate Internet popularity would concern the composition of what makes the best viral images, right? Well, good news: There’s now a tool you can use to predict whether your latest Instagram or Flickr shot has the potential to go viral. The best part? It’s free!

According to StyleCaster, enterprising MIT student Aditya Khosla analyzed a whopping 2.3 million photos on Flickr to develop an algorithm capable of predicting the popularity of an Instagram photo. The algorithm looks at factors like color, types of objects included, how many followers you have, and tags; according to The Verge, “Miniskirts, bright colors, people instead of scenery = good. Plungers = bad. Pink and yellow miniskirts, even better. Green plungers, horrible.” Sounds about right, if a little sexist. (Miniskirts? Of course. Siiiiiiigh.) Good news for animal lovers, though: Giant pandas, cheetahs, and llamas were all found to score rather well indeed.

I really wanted to give the algorithm a test run so I could share the results with you all; unfortunately, though, it’s under heavy load right now and keeps giving me an error message every time I try. But it might start working again at any minute, so if you’re curious and want to give it a shot yourself, you can find it here. Snap away, my friends! Snap away!

Image: Carl Court/Getty Images