Snapchat is a social media platform that's taking the millennials by storm, but what is it, exactly? How does it work? Here's the lowdown.
Snapchat is a mobile-exclusive app that has been around since 2011, according to an article written by Sara Dyer on the Alabama Media Group. Unlike Facebook or Twitter, where you update your friends through words and pictures, Snapchat focuses entirely on pictures and videos. These are posts called Snaps that take mere seconds to view. Snapchat also differs from other social media sites in that the posts disappear after a day.
The platform is a big hit with the millennial crowd. But, just why is this mobile app with posts that only last a day so appealing to them? Because:
It's where the young people are: Let's face it, Facebook is not the young people hub it once was. Today, everyone's parents, grandparents and distant relatives know how to use it. This is not the case with Snapchat, which makes millennials feel more comfortable sharing videos or pictures with friends there versus Facebook. There's less chance of them becoming the next big topic at Thanksgiving dinner.
The filters make it fun: Snapchat has a wide assortment of filters, little effects you can add to a picture or video to jazz it up. These include flower crowns that show up on your head, making your face look like a puppy, and much more. Why post plain pictures and videos when filters exist?
It offers a new kind of first-person POV: Facebook and Twitter have always focused on chronicling moments in people's daily lives, but Snapchat does this in an entirely different way with their pictures and videos, making you feel like you're really there. Maya Kosoff wrote in an article on BusinessInsider many quotes she got from millennials, stating what they enjoyed about Snapchat. One of them said, "Snapchat is a way of seeing the world through the eyes of other people that Facebook and Instagram just don’t offer."
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