By Joseph Staples // SWNS


The average person loses 11 cherished memories per year – in the form of accidentally deleted and otherwise misplaced digital videos and photos, according to new research.

A new global survey of 4,000 people across eight countries probed respondents’ biggest “memory mishaps” that lead to the loss of these important records.

The most common reason for losing souvenirs include accidentally deleting a photo or video – a gaffe to which nearly half (48%) of respondents copped.

Other top contenders included being forced to delete other photos/videos due to running out of storage (46%), running out of space on phone/camera during an important event (35%) and losing important photos/videos by failing to save from a text or email (29%).

The most common reaction to losing a fond memory? Swearing, which 27% of respondents admit they’ve done upon realizing they had misplaced a photo or video that was important to them.

Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of GoPro for the launch of its new Quik app, the study also examined respondents’ opinions on the culture of sharing photos and videos on social media.

Over four in 10 respondents said that they have so many photos and videos on their devices that if they don’t flag, folder or heart a “keeper” photo right away, it’s “basically gone forever.”

It appears to be an even more common problem for U.S. respondents, 53% of whom felt this way. 

So it’s hardly surprising 62% of respondents reported that they “sometimes” or “often” feel overwhelmed by trying to select the best photos or videos to share out of a collection they’ve captured.

And documenting events is now a significant time investment, as the average survey taker was found to spend 19 minutes just combing through photos after an event in order to ascertain which were the best shots.

This is likely to be even more of a problem for the 55% of respondents who say they tend to be the designated photo-taker at gatherings of family and friends.

“You know a ‘keeper’ photo or memory when you see it, but the data clearly demonstrates that losing track of that perfect shot is all too easy,” said Rick Loughery, GoPro’s Vice President of Global Marketing and Communications. “The Quik app helps photo-takers declutter their camera roll and never lose track of their favorite shots again.”

But being home more often during the pandemic hasn’t only shifted anxiety surrounding photo ops – according to the data, it’s also relieved some of the pressure of photo sharing.

Forty-nine percent of respondents agreed that, prior to the pandemic, pressure to share memories on social media prevented them from being “in the moment.”

That pressure has been lessened, happily, for three-quarters of these respondents.

“It’s completely natural to want to balance being present with documenting and sharing the moments that are so important to us  – from events like a birthday, wedding or road trip to simple family moments shared at home – so that we can look back on them,” added Loughery.

“But what’s most important is your ability to relive your favorites – those perfect moments you cherish – and share them with a close group of people that really matter to you, like your friends and family, rather than feeling pressure to please your ‘followers.’”



  1. Accidentally deleted a photo/video 48%
  2. Been forced to delete other photos/videos due to running out of storage 46%
  3. Run out of space on phone/camera during an important event 35%
  4. Lost important photos/videos by failing to save from a text/email 29%
  5. Misplaced a digital photo/video within your device’s storage 17%

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