Snapchat exploded soon after launch, quickly becoming the go-to social media app for young people. The model of sharing timed photos with friends made it simple to document your evening or send silly photos using the bizarre filters included with the app. Despite the massive success of Snapchat, they seem to have taken a page out of the book of social media king Facebook. Following in Facebook’s footsteps, Snapchat has offered users a way to reflect on the past year with “A look back at 2017.”
A Look Back At 2017
If you’d like a look back at 2017, you can access the feature through the memories icon – located at the bottom of Snapchat’s home screen interface. Clicking on “a look back at 2017” generates a unique Story based around your timeline of pictures. If the technology doesn’t do as well as you’d like it to at documenting your year, you can edit the arrangement of photos by clicking “edit Story” and clicking the X on various snaps to remove them from your collage. Whether you’re removing evidence of an embarrassing Snapchat binge or avoiding having your Story filled with 100 photos of the dog filter, you have a good amount of control over a look back at 2017.
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The Verge mentions that a look back at 2017 may not be available if you don’t have enough pictures from the last few months, so if you’re not an avid Snapchat user you might not have the capability to review a year of snaps. This is unfortunate for those of us who send snapchats on rare occasions, but it makes sense considering a look back at 2017 and the focus on providing an overview of the entire year. And if you’re like me and flood your Snapchat friends with bizarre photos of yourself and your cat, a look back at 2017 may be a little more embarrassing than it is inspiring.
Social Media Copycats
As social media networks become more and more advanced, there’s a decent amount of crossover between different platforms. Snapchat has been accused of stealing a look back at 2017 from Facebook’s year in review feature. It’s clear that there’s some inspiration there, and perhaps it is a copy – but Facebook is far from blameless when it comes to pulling features from other networks.
Pulling features from Instagram for Facebook is understandable, considering the company acquired their competitor a couple of years ago. However, when it comes to copying other websites and apps, Facebook is a frequent offender. A recently tested “streak” feature that is blatantly inspired by Snapchat’s chat streak challenge has called the integrity of the company into question. Obviously all social networks have a vested interest in keeping their users engaged and frequently using the app, and it’s clear that Snapchat had struck gold with the chat streak feature.
Another more obvious instance of Facebook copying Instagram is a near exact copy of Snapchat’s Story feature – a collection of posts that vanish after a day.
A look back at 2017 may be inspired by Facebook, but it’s clear that basic ideas and features are fair game for any of the social media platforms. By slightly adjusting how it works and changing names, these apps feed off of each other. In the end, it leads to a more homogenized environment. In a way, it’s better for the consumer as they have access to more cool perks regardless of their choice of platform. However, we may continue to see apps becoming more and more similar – which could potentially lead to lowered usage overall as people stick to their favorite option. After all, why use Facebook if Snapchat starts doing the same thing? Or vice versa?
Check out a look back at 2017 and let us know what you think.