Snapchat Is Taking Over!!!

Screenshot_2015-03-27-09-12-12Snapchat has officially taken over. I woke up this morning at 7:00am to get ready for my bus ride back to NYC and received a text message from my friend saying, “There was a building explosion in NY.” I replied with saying “Well that’s not good.” I took my phone and Googled the incident using CNN via the internet. I watched what happened and sources said the explosion caused two buildings to collapse and ignited a large fire that spread to neighboring buildings. The news reported that almost everyone evacuated the building in addition to nineteen (19) people injured and at least one person was reported missing. How unfortunate I thought to myself, and then I was just thankful it was not near my mom’s job. Several years ago, NYC suffered from a terrorist attack and the loss of the two largest buildings, the Twin Towers. My mother used to work right near those buildings and though the explosion happened before 9:00 am, I was eager to assure myself that it was not near her current job location. The explosion was located in East Village, Manhattan. It was visible from several areas alerting all the locals of the issue – which brings me to my next point.

In route to New York (still in Newton, MA), I checked my Snapchat. Nothing out of the norm, I usually check it pretty frequent like any other user. As I scrolled down, there was a snap story with the “Big Apple that said, “NYCLife1.” Believe it or not, I was a little surprised. Below are some pictures taken in real time, showing what everyone was doing during the explosion:

Screenshot_2015-03-27-09-11-53       Screenshot_2015-03-27-09-11-46

Snapchat provides instant news and information where viewers can observe what is going on from a distant [My being in Massachusetts], rather than having to read about it online or moments later after that damage is done. Personally, by observing the explosion via Snapchat, there was more insight available instantly about the incident rather than depending on the news and reporters, who tend to leave things out. The government does not completely inform us of everything that goes on and to watch a 200 second story on an event like this speaks more than just a thousand words. A key takeaway from this is such: individuals like ourselves have so much more power than we think. With a simple 10 second snap, I was able to gather more insight and view the happening via Snapchat even after reading an article that summarized the event in brief.

Snapchat is on the rise of being one of the best social media platforms, definitely surpassing Facebook and Instagram in my eyes. Not only has it made users communicate visually but it has made the world feel a lot smaller by embedding snaps and pictures from all over the world into a story line – making it easier to stay connected by all means.


  1. Great post! This is one of the things I find so interesting about social media–it’s really changing how we receive and consume news. Not only are we increasingly turning to social media sites to get our information, but a lot of the time, the news that is shared on social media is not driven by any media organization but by average users, like the Snapchat videos. It’s interesting to allow the average user to inform people, there are a lot of implications. It’s nice in one way to see content from other users, but there’s also the trust factor that news organizations can have that the average user does not.

  2. I completely agree with everything in this post Shayra. I find myself frequently turning to social media, namely Facebook and Twitter, to receive news as opposed to traditional television and online news outlets. And now with Snapchat moving in to the mix, I am interested to see how civilian-reported news changes the information we have access to. While I agree with @ehughes19 that we tend to trust news sources more than average people, I feel as though we may actually receive more “real” news through Snapchat. News sources sometimes distort stories, only report what they want us to know and often leaving out information out. With civilians taking short videos and capturing photographs then sharing them on Snapchat, I believe we may see a more unbiased view of an event. I am also interested to see whether traditional news sources such as NBC, CNN and Fox ever turn to Snapchat as a means of reporting. I think there is a lot of opportunity for people to leverage Snapchat for a variety of ways. Great post!

  3. Wow, what a great example! I do think this is worth discussing in class!

  4. Great post. Platforms like Snapchat and Twitter seem to be preferred sources of information in disaster-related events because of their ‘real-time’ nature. Journalism news outlets (CNN, NY Times, etc.) can’t cover these events in the same way because they lack the resources to compete. For example, Twitter was a great tool for sharing information in the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings largely through the ‘wisdom of crowds.’ CNN, in an effort to compete with Twitter on timeliness, incorrectly reported that the suspects were in custody. I’m not so sure CNN, a finite organization with only so much human capital, should view itself as a competitor with the likes of Twitter or Snapchat.

  5. Totally agree Shayra. I think the current trend is towards as much end-consumer interaction and content creation as possible. People want to see themselves in the news and current events. Snapchat is an ideal platform for this. If you consider the wide popularity of sites like TMZ, who’s business model is based on buying every video, from every filmer, and thus creating an empire of content, then Snapchat has set itself up to go one step ahead. Snapchat doesn;t even have to pay for its news content, people will gladly do the work pro bono. Bite-sized, visually stimulating news seems to be the way forward, and news sources are battling to get your attention. I beleive Snapchat’s 10 second videos created by the common man is the beginning of the new era of news of the people, by the people, and for the people.

  6. Pretty cool! I, too, think that Snapchat is fully taking over. They are incorporating everything into their app: news, photos, messaging, and limited viewing time of a message. What I do find interesting is that people are obsessed with snapchat, which allows only 20-30 characters per picture. I just read an article that spoke about how small talk is killing our culture. Is snapchat killing our culture?

  7. Wow, great post! Snapchat seems to be the most ‘real-time’ communication platform. In response to Shawn, I do not think Snapchat is killing our culture, but certainly is impacting it. Snapchat has established a huge community as users keep up with friends and news, but also has a powerful influence spreading and raising awareness in the community. For example, the “Wear Yellow for Seth” geofilter in support of a young UK boy living with a life-threatening condition. I was entirely unaware of the campaign until I came across the filter while sending a Snapchat, so I googled it to find out more. The use of Snapchat to raise awareness for campaigns like that was a great use of the platform that I hope to see utilized more in the future.

%d bloggers like this: