News on Snapchat

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In our recent class discussion with Peter Hamby, the Head of News for Snapchat, he really grabbed my attention in regards to the future of the platform and its potential ability for news gathering. As someone who regularly uses Snapchat, but usually not for the discover and live stories, here are my answers to Peter’s questions and my thoughts on it as a news platform.

The news I mainly consume is local Boston news, national news, and international, mainly in Asia and Europe. I like feature and travel stories. I usually stick with reading the New York Times, Boston Globe, and Washington Post, supplemented with random magazine articles.

I do not regularly check the discover stories, but when I do, I appreciate how interactive and engaging the presentation is. I do not read it more because I don’t like not knowing what the stories are before clicking into the specific news organization’s story. I would rather have a list of stories than a list of companies.

Also from my experience, the majority of the stories seem to be soft news, whereas I would rather read more hard news. The articles feel a little thin to me.

I also do not regularly watch the live stories. However, I did enjoy when there was a new major city highlighted on the live feed each day this past summer. I thought it was a fun use of it and showed a unique perspective into the cities.

I don’t watch it more though because it doesn’t regularly cover events I’m interested in. And when it does, I find that many are lacking a cohesive story and feel more like a bunch of random clips that are hard to follow. I think it might be cool if a live event was shown through the perspective of one well known person.

I would love to have a live story in Boston! I think Snapchat offers a great perspective for news gathering and will only get better as the number of users grow and the platform evolves.

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