We have all heard the cliché expression, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” Well, if that’s the case then I hope you brought your reading glasses with you, because according to DMR (Digital Mobile Radio) as of January of this year on average 9,000 pictures were shared on Snapchat every second. Snapchat has over 100 million daily active users with 73% of those users being millennials; that’s a lot of snaps. The question is, does snapchatting take away from enjoying the moment or make us less social when we use it in the presence of others?
If you have ever observed or been a part of a group teenagers hanging out for an extended period of time, then chances are at some point there was no conversation taking place and every member of that group was looking at their phones. But can you truly call using Snapchat, while sitting next to other friend’s anti-social behavior? I would argue no.
Snapchat is a way for us to connect with others by sending images and videos to friends. With 100 million daily users there is virtually no limit to the amount of friends you can have on Snapchat, although it can be very difficult to snapchat all of your friends if you have a lot. On Snapchat you can post an image or video to your story for 24 hours, allowing for all your friends to see what you are up to, enabling many to many communication.
Although a person might not be talking to the friend that is right next to them, they are still being social by communicating with their other friends through Snapchat. Not to mention teenagers love to pull their friends over to take selfies to send to other friends. Often times, the person on Snapchat not talking to their friend next to them will see a funny image or video that they can’t resist sharing and show the friend right beside them, making them multi-social.
Observing a real life experience through your phone camera can take away from the enjoyment of the experience. In the back of your mind you are concerned with getting the best camera angle and recording the best quality video instead of focusing completely on the event unfolding right before your eyes. While snapchatting events might take away from a person fully appreciating what is going on, to some it is worth it to be able to share their experiences with others and save it so they will never forget. Who knows how many times in the future you will look fondly back upon a funny video you took with a friend and saved to Snapchat with nostalgia?