Doug’s Rant: Twitter Stickers, Photos on Social, Apps Chase Apps

Yes it’s been a while since I’ve posted a rant!  Let’s do this….

Twitter Stickers

Twitter Stickers

You may have seen Twitter’s recent announcement about the new “stickers” feature which allows you to add emojis and other things to your photos.  Fortune points out the obvious play on Twitter’s part to keep up with Snapchat with a headline that gives the new feature a positive spin.  Meanwhile the Wall Street Journal is completely and inexplicably oblivious to the chasing of snapchat with a slightly-less-than-flattering headline about Twitter….  Note in particular the second paragraph in the WSJ article about the other “communication” apps with stickers.  C’mon….  Really?  ZERO mention of Snapchat there?  That’s amazing.  I’m not totally sure how I feel about stickers yet since I haven’t used them but I have plenty of thoughts and you can look at this from a few different perspectives which we’ll get to.

A Couple Thoughts On Social Photography…

Meanwhile as photographers the ongoing debate of whether iPhone pics and the ease of entry is “ruining” the industry is an interesting one to us.  This article on Popular Photography while not overtly addressing the big picture in that regard seems to come from that mindset, claiming that using Twitter stickers is a way to “completely ruin your photos”.  I always find these types of opinions a little troubling.  We’ve always embraced the idea that the more people appreciate everyday photography the more they will appreciate professional photography.  We’ve always looked at Snapchat and Instagram as opportunities to have fun just like everyone else and we actually use them to highlight aspects of what we do at Frameable Faces.  To call attention to stickers being a way to ruin pictures is silly to me.  If you take a picture you don’t want to ruin with a sticker, then DON’T ADD A STICKER…… duh.  Right?  Maybe the fun you can have with stickers can help you build community to draw people in to see the stuff that is meant to stand on its own without the stickers.  We actually covered this topic today on our photography show “The Photo Shop” on @ParachuteTV1 on Periscope if you’re interested in taking a look.

Social Media Apps chasing Other Social Media Apps…

So while the photography studio owner in me doesn’t have a problem with stickers, the social media guy in me might.  Here’s what bugs me a little about them – keep in mind that I have not used them yet.  This is an overall statement about social media platforms that I think applies here, even though I may be admitting soon that stickers are the greatest thing to happen to twitter (although I doubt it).  I have no problem admitting when I’m wrong…

Here’s my issue.  Each time a unique social media platform adds a feature to chase and become like another platform, it blurs the lines between platforms that make them cool.  I like the different uses for each platform.  I like the different etiquette and the different cultures of the different apps.  Here are three other examples I thought were somewhere between silly and annoying when they rolled out and still do:

  • Facebook hashtags  Good try Facebook but you are NOT twitter.  Hashtags totally flopped on Facebook – they just really don’t belong there in my opinion.
  • Instagram video  I believe Instagram did this as a reaction to Vine at the time.  I can’t stand videos on Instagram.  There was nothing “insta” about pausing while scrolling though the pics in the feed to watch a 15 second video and now the videos can be up to 60 seconds – good grief.   I know not everyone agrees with me on this but it is my rant…
  • Periscope sketch  Rolling out the ability to sketch on the screen while you’re broadcasting was, well…sketchy.  I can only conclude that this was a way to chase Snapchat (?) even though the two are completely apples and oranges.  Sonia Figueroa is the only scoper I’ve seen who consistently makes me smile when she draws hearts on the screen to “give them back” to her viewers (she’s one of my faves), but at a time when everyone was waiting for other more practical features this was a bit of an annoyance.

So there it is…  had to do it.  Thoughts?  Are you using Twitter stickers?  Can you think of other app fails from apps chasing apps?  Please comment, share your thoughts, and share this post!

 

 

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