Snapchat has become sort of a generational litmus test — an ageist line in the sand, if you will. Basically, Snapchat's savvy users are young and, "with it," in a sense, while those who don't use it or understand it are generally seen as old and out of touch with technology today. That's sadly just the kind of world we live in now, folks — and now, it seems Snapchat is taking it one step further. According to reports, the social media company is taking their brand of disappearing data one step further by introducing Snapchat's first ever scripted television series. AT&T, who was behind @SummerBreak (ugh, you remember THOSE snaps, right?) is once again teaming up with the little ghost that could to make Snapper Hero.
The series will be a super hero saga created by and starring social media celebs like Anna Akana, Freddie Wong, Harley Morenstein, and Jasmeet Singh. (So if you don't know who these guys are either, then Snapper Hero is about as relevant as a phone book — AMIRIGHT, MILLENIALS?)
AT&T's sponsorship of Snapchat obviously means big bucks. Both companies are looking to the series to be the next big thing in integrated media. They're banking on the series' stars to bring their audiences with them, and what's unique about the project is that it will use fansourcing as a means of producing content and telling the story. What this means, basically, is that the stars of Snapper Hero will reach out to their fans to ask what audiences want to see happen next in the show — and, based off those suggestions, the series will continue. According to Liz Nixon, engagement director for AT&T, "What we are most excited about is that connection between creator and fan, and that phenomenon of call and response."
So, since the revolutionary project is so open to suggestions — here are a few to help work out this new endeavor:
Issue: Isolating Users
Solution: Snapchat and AT&T seem to be well aware that Snapper Hero is meant for a younger generation, and they're certainly not hiding that aspect of it. However, to have a huge corporate sponsorship and think the young folk won't pick up on the fact that they're being sold something is more than a little demeaning. So, suggestion: Maybe don't be so heavy-handed in the production with your labels, because kids pick up on that stuff, and it's not always to your benefit. In fact, those whipper snappers are probably already figuring out a way to do you idea better.
Issue: Unwanted Content
Solution: REMEMBER WHAT U2 DID TO iTUNES? Please, please Snapchat: Don't U2 this. If people want to see your show, have them add the user, don't just spam EVERYONE. That probably won't create the best customer satisfaction.
Issue: Disappearing Content/Repeating Content
Solution: Apparently, new episodes will only be available for 24 hours, which could be an issue. I know it's how Snapchat works and all, but not being able to access content or replay parts of content without starting from the beginning feels like a recipe for disaster. Maybe make the episodes available on YouTube after they premiere on Snapchat?
Issue: Minimal Attention Spans
Solution: Let's get real, whenever I get a snap that lasts 10 seconds, I stop looking after the first 2 or 3 seconds. So, maybe diversifying length of content will help!
Overall, Snapper Hero could be a revolutionary concept for the way media is consumed in the modern tech-landscape — and with these few suggestions, it could definitely change the game.