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Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Snapchat and Instagram

The saying is that a picture is worth a thousand words. It must be true if you think about how popular pictures are on computers and mobile devices. Today I am going to talk about two apps for download to your iPhone, Android or Windows Phone. In some ways they compare to Twitter because in a very short time you can communicate to all of your followers. The main difference is that these apps both use pictures instead of text as their way of communication.


Instagram has been around since 2010. In April of 2012 it was aquired by Facebook. Instagram is an instant photosharing app. When you open the app you can take pictures and instantly send them to one person OR to all of the people who follow you. You can set your profile to private so that only people you approve can follow you, or you can leave it open and anyone can follow you and see whatever photos you send out.


  • You can send photos you take immediately out to a bunch of friends at one time. So it is an easy way of sharing with friends or family.
  • A copy of each photo you have taken is kept in your profile, so you can go back and see what you took in the past.
  • You can delete pictures that you took in the past. At the bottom of each picture there are three dots ... When you click them a menu opens up that gives you the choice to delete, share the photo, copy and share the URL, email the photo and tag people who are in it. Each photo that is uploaded is kept on the Instagram server and can be accessed that way.


  • The photos you take and send are out of your control once someone else receives them. They have the ability of sharing it with someone else and even to put it onto their Facebook.
  • These pictures are not easy to print or even to save to your computer.

Why would people want to use this?

Receiving photos exactly when people have taken them is exciting and makes you feel more a part of their life. Teenagers like to send funny photos to their friends to make them laugh. It is also possible to edit the photo and write captions on it before sending it. (the picture at the top was taken when I was looking at a webpage on what age people should stop driving. I typed the words across it!)


The guys who created SNAPCHAT were feeling frustrated by the privacy issues with Facebook and Instagram. The problem of photos being resent to others and downloaded and saved could cause a person problems. Even if you delete your account you never know if someone downloaded and saved one of your pictures and it will show up when you least expect it. These Stanford students (age 22 and 24) created an app very similar to Instagram, except that the pictures are only available for 10 seconds when the person who received them opens them up. The picture then vanishes and is removed from the server.  It is possible, but difficult to copy a picture that shows up for just 10 seconds.


  • A person can send a funny picture without worrying that it will be around forever. 


  • People can use it to send inappropriate photos (nude, etc...) that will not get them in trouble.

Why would people want to use this?

Like Instagram it is possible to send things immediately to friends or family when something is happening. You can send funny pictures that make you laugh without worrying that they might show up later and not be so funny.  

1 comment:

  1. Wow is just the simple word that may explain that how much I liked it. It was nicely stuffed with the material I was looking for. It’s great to be here though by chance.
    instagram shoutouts