A eulogy to Vine (or, long live Snapchat and IG Stories)

A eulogy to Vine (or, long live Snapchat and IG Stories)

To those of you that knew Vine,

We gather here today to celebrate a life that is coming to an abrupt close in the next few months.

Vine is revered for its many contributions to the meme and Internet community.

At the time of its birth in 2012, Vine was the go-to platform for sharing short videos — number one in the hearts of teenagers and App store charts (at just six months old!).

It understood the essence of brevity, keeping things to a mere 6 seconds that spoke volumes in emotion.

From humour to anger, to downright silliness with quirky song and dance, Vine could always bring a smile to our faces with its infinite loops.

Some say Vine started too strong with no long-term plan to succeed.

It hosted over 300 million active users in its heyday, an impressive figure to match the $30 million Twitter acquired it for. But Vine’s downfall began soon after its popularity did.

There are different reasons for Vine’s descent, from a recent decline in Twitter revenue (and a 9% layoff of staff), to its inability to increase users.

Most importantly, it was unable to monetize and did not keep up with other video platforms as they transitioned towards longer-form video content.

Vine left behind several successors.

Its eldest relative, Snapchat, continues video success through a mix of public and private content.

Users stay loyal to the Snapchat platform with its ridiculous face-swap and toast-head filters, and brands pay premium bucks to reach these bumblebee-faced audiences.

According to a March 2016 survey, 73% of users communicate on Snapchat to people they know, while 47% of users watch brand Stories and the Discover featured content — showing a mix of personal and public applications.

While Vine was able to deliver on the personal usage side, it fell short in generating any internal brand opportunities.

Snapchat continues to lead in short 10-second videos that can be shared for personal messaging or as branded content.

Through a combination of sponsored geo-filters, featured events and Discover stories, the Snapchat app is able to generate business interest and content that appeals to individual users.

But it’s not the only platform that is cashing in on video success in the wake of Vine’s closure...

Instagram Stories is another one of Vine’s successors.

Introduced this year, the Facebook-owned photo sharing platform now allows users or brands to publish daily video/photo stories.

Think of the update as Snapchat’s fraternal twin.

The only difference thus far (aside from technical features) is in the way branded content reaches users. In order for a brand to be displayed on top of a user’s Instagram feed, they must opt-in by following the brand account.

On Instagram, there is no featured Story section (for now), with advertisers relying on in-feed content posts to reach audiences.

And thanks to a user’s connected Facebook profile and affiliations, Instagram ads are also able to target specific audiences.

And while Instagram Stories show promise, there’s word that another baby is coming into the video platform family.

WhatsApp’s new 24-hour photo/video sharing feature called “Status” is being tested.

And it’s clear that the video-sharing market is meeting another contender.

While the feature hasn’t hit North America, it’s clear the influence that the short-form video feature best known by Vine and perfected by Snapchat is here to stay.

Any guesses on who will be the next to join Vine? Let’s hope there are infinite loops in heaven.

vicky liu canupy content

About the Author:

Vicky Liu is a Canupy content creator, blogger and social media enthusiast. She studied RTA Media Production at Ryerson University in Toronto. Her interests include digital design, concert-going and stalking assorted bakeries on Instagram.