By Sofia Garfias-Yi
“Wait, what did I say in my last snap?”
This common question between snapchat users reflects one of the key features that has set this widely popular application apart from its other social media counterparts: the fleeting nature of the messages. Whether the message is mere seconds or twenty four hours long (for stories), users can enjoy the feeling of fast paced, non-permanent interactions with their friends. The idea is simple and millions of users have taken advantage of this and the other features that Snapchat offers, from wacky filters, ability to screenshot and view who has seen your story.
But what could be better than seeing what your own friends are up to? That’s right. Seeing what other people are up to. We, as active social media users, do this quite often. From scrolling down our Facebook newsfeeds to browsing through pictures on someone’s Instagram account, we’re constantly keeping up with our friends and people that we personally don’t know. In turn, Snapchat has taken advantage of this knowledge. Users can now find snap stories from events around the world. For example, today U of I students can not only see what’s happening on campus, but also updates on New York Fashion Week and the NBA All-Star Game. People from all over the world contribute to these massive stories, giving anyone with access to the application a chance to experience all of these events.
This feature has expanded Snapchat’s horizons, as they were able to follow other social media platforms’ tracks in becoming more globalized. However, there is another less recognized element of Snapchat that has helped propel its popularity: celebrities. These stars choose to share their lives with their snap stories, and it’s not often that you can see exactly what your favorite celebrity has been up to in the past twenty four hours. While high status celebrities like DJ Khaled, Kylie Jenner, Miley Cyrus, Rihanna, Madonna, and more have taken up Snapchat, users can also find YouTube stars on the application. This phenomenon capitalizes on our society’s fixation on the lives of celebrities and helps us realize how we often forget that these people are just like us at the end of the day. Moreover, the presence of these celebrities on Snapchat has encouraged users to further engage with the app. A case in point is DJ Khaled. His rise to fame on Snapchat can be attributed to his stories of his daily routine of waking up, eating breakfast, watering his (perhaps overwatered) flowers and sharing his keys to successes. His stories have generated a movement about achieving success, various memes and an incredible amount of followers and media recognition.
Based on these observations, we can turn it back around by asking: Who else benefits from this?
Well, let’s just say that Snapchat somehow has become a key to success.
Check out BuzzFeed’s list of 18 Celebrity Snapchat accounts that you should follow.