Snapchat might soon bring 'permanent snaps'. Why the U-turn?
Snapchat's most iconic feature, the 'disappearing' snaps, could soon see a major change. The company is said to be working on a plan to introduce permanent snaps, which unlike the current ones won't disappear after some time. This could mark a major shift for Snap which has particularly focused on the element of ephemerality since its inception. Here's more on the possible move.
Speaking to people familiar with Snap's plans, Reuters has learned the company wants to make public snaps, shared from 'Our Stories' section, last longer or even permanently. The change would be aimed at making content more accessible to publishers and creating a source for ad revenue. It's expected the move would only apply to public posts, and non-public content would disappear as it does.
Last year, Snap launched its 'Stories Everywhere' initiative to drive content outside of the main Snapchat app. As part of the effort, the company made public Stories viewable for 90 days and partnered with news agencies like Reuters. However, these partners have raised concerns that disappearing stories aren't working as they eventually disappear from their content - leading Snap to contemplate permanent Stories.
Along with permanent stories, Snap might also reveal identities of those sharing photos and videos as public Stories. The element of anonymity has been another problem for publishers, who struggle to verify users' Snapchat videos/photos and ultimately fail to use them in their content. That said, this will make Snapchat more visible during newsworthy events, much like Facebook and Twitter.
These plans, if executed, will give Snap an opportunity to bolster its revenue and partnerships with publishers. However, it is important to note that doing away from ephemerality, even only for public posts, might drive backlash from users of the service, particularly those who are primarily focused on the element of privacy. Snap has not yet commented on the report.