SO as if I hadn’t found enough ways to waste my time on the Internet already, I only went and joined SnapChat.
Listen, I know.
I know it’s only for the young people and the cool people, but it’s like this – I’m a nosey hoor and if something gives me the opportunity to see inside other people’s lives in real time then I’m going to take that and run with it.
SnapChat is kind of like a mix of other social media, all rolled into one – a little Facebook, a little Twitter, a little Instagram, in one neat 30-second package.
You can post videos and pictures, chat to others, sent private messages, but it all disappears from your ‘Story’ (kind of like your FB timeline) within 24-hours and then you start all over again.
The main thing I like about it however is that mainly people post videos so you get to hear their voices, see their faces and nose inside their homes as well.
I’ll level with you, half the time I’m not listening to your snaps, I’m avidly looking at the shelf behind your head in your video to see what stuff you have in your sitting room.
I also joined mainly because a lot of bloggers joined it and I always like getting to know other bloggers more, seeing where they work, what makes them tick and SnapChat really is a great way to do that. (Of course not everyone there is a blogger, I just happen to follow a lot of them.)
I started blogging way back in 2005 – on a now defunct blog – when a lot of bloggers were anonymous or used pseudonyms, before social media really took off here.
I remember going to the first ever Irish Blog Awards in Dublin and the big buzz of the night was whether or not the acclaimed blogger Twenty Major was going to show up; whether or not he was a real person and whether or not he was even a he. (He didn’t show that year, but he did the next and he IS a he and he’s very nice and handsome.)
Anyway, the point I’m getting at was that at that time blogging was more about online personas, there was a bit of mystery there and people didn’t really know much about the blogger behind the blogs. You read a blog because you liked the subject matter or the person’s style of writing, but by and large, unless you knew them in real life, you didn’t know a huge amount about the individual blogger.
These days it’s different, I think, because we have so many new ways to interact with each other on so many different platforms, we’re getting a more rounded view of the person behind the blog. It’s still all about that blog (’bout that blog no treble) but with a little added personality thrown in.
Here, above other social media platforms, is where you’ll find your personalities. And, you know what, you might find in the end that you don’t actually like those personalities, but dammit Jim, they’re real.
Unlike some other forms of social media SnapChat is particularly true to life. People post from their beds, their sofas, with hangovers, with make up halfway down their faces, under shit fluorescent lighting in their offices, hashtag, no filter. Ok, you’ll get the odd gorgeous specimen in full make-up with perfect lighting, complaining like an enormous liar that she looks like shit but they’re few and far between.
I also love it for its immediacy. You snap, you post, people see it, it’s over, move on. It’s fast, chatty, buzzy and very entertaining.
This week particularly it’s kept me company as I’ve been recovering from surgery and I’ve really got more of a feel for it and am enjoying it even more now.
One slight downside – which isn’t really even a downside – is that there are no ‘like’ or ‘favourite’ buttons on SnapChat – if you like something, or find a person funny, you actually have to get off your hole and send them a message to say that. But personally I think that kind of forces you to engage with your followers and interact a bit more.
I’m still finding my way around it and mainly post pictures of my breakfast and my face and videos of me telling embarrassing bum surgery stories, but it’s fast becoming my newest obsession.
I follow a lot of people on SnapChat and enjoy all of their stories but here are a few of my favourites: @lovelygirlybits, @rosemarymaccabe, @covetedmess, @cunninghamlaura, @deefur, @hollywooddublin, @itscherrysue, @jamespatrice, @paulieblogger, @the_jayrow, @lorrainehaigney, @sharonleavy, @seraemily, @thebeauttruth, @waxpertsellen, @yazglitter, @sarawimm, @robo_jojo. There are loads there I’m forgetting, but these will start you off anyway and if you want to follow me, I’m on @beatingblog.
Tell me, are you on SnapChat? Let me what you think of it, in the comments.