SnapChat experimented again with its ‘Our Story’ feature during the World Cup final on Sunday. By sending their SnapChats to ‘Riolive2014,’ users in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil were able to share their photos and short videos with the world.
Our Story is an aggregated public version of SnapChat’s ‘Stories’ feature, which allows users to string together photos and videos into a short visual narrative. This is the second time the company has tested the Our Story feature, the first time was during the Electric Daisy Carnival, a music festival.
The Our Story feature represents a new step for an app that has mostly facilitated disappearing private photos and videos between users, which have opted-in to connecting. The Riolive2014 account was displayed to all users regardless. Apparently, because of the public nature of the feature all SnapChats viewable on the Riolive2014 account were hand-curated before being added to the visible stream.
It may also be another step for the company to monetize, as advertisers could curate and promote their photos and videos from their events.
Similarly to the hashtag phenomena already existing within Twitter and Facebook, Our Story has the potential to tap into a much larger market opportunity. The hand-curated images pushed by SnapChat on Sunday captured the spirit and experience in and around the World Cup final in a way that television did not. We remember great events and moments in SnapChat-like snippets, so the concept may be a great way to expand the collective memory.
If SnapChat does plan to go down this public route, it may face some obstacles. The streaming nature of Our Story makes it difficult to flag inappropriate content, meaning the company may have to hand curate or closely monitor the feature’s use.
Companies like Crowdflower offer crowdsourced and computer automated solutions to monitoring public content, so that may be one solution.
Given the rave reviews of the Our Story Riolive2014, SnapChat will be working hard to overcome those obstacles.