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Put it in your Story: Digital Storytelling in Instagram and Snapchat Stories

Written by M. Amâncio

Paper category

Master Thesis


Business Administration>Communication & Media




Put it in your Story: Digital Storytelling in Instagram and Snapchat Stories Master Thesis: "Write it into your story!"-What's happening on social media now? Snapchat is a very young social media platform, launched in 2011 (Monteiro & Mazzilli, 2016). However, this does not rule out the fact that this platform influences all other social media with its unique features. In the world of platforms such as Facebook and Instagram, returning in time and checking the published content is the key, the main idea is that your memory will always exist. Snapchat made its debut when brief social interactions became the most popular theme around social media. The main features of Snapchat and the reasons why it is attractive to users; Snapchat's 24-hour continuous video and pictures present the popular function of "story", in which users can see their own "story" and the "story" of people they follow . Therefore, with the emergence of Internet trends, other platforms have begun to acquire the function of “story”: Instagram in August 2016 (Instagram blog, 2017), WhatsApp in February 2017 (Wagner, 2017) and May 2017 Facebook of the month (Wagner, 2017) For example, this has further increased the popularity of the feature: “More people share their own media than ever before, and social media participation now accounts for more than 20% of total Internet usage, and people upload Pictures and tag links spent millions of hours commenting, writing some short introductions, and yes, occasionally uploading videos they made themselves. More and more people and communities are realizing the power of their voice in the media and are Find ways to express yourself and the community through new media” (Lambert, 2013, p. 4). The number of Snapchat users jumped from 10 million to 70 million in two years (Piwek & Joinson, 2016), and Instagram now has more than 300 million active users (Järvinen & Ohtonen & Karjaluoto, 2016). These two social media platforms are the platforms where users are more active in uploading content on "Stories", and this is the main reason why this research focuses on this function of these two platforms. The "Stories" function provides another way for users to post what they are doing and thinking on a continuous timeline; a way of telling their stories, as the name of the function implies . My interest revolves around what type of content users share in their "story" and how they tell their story. In order to get the answer, I used a key concept and a theory to form my theoretical framework. The first is the concept of digital storytelling, that is, the practice of storytelling on a network platform. 2.1.1. Snapchat Since Snapchat was launched in September 2011 (Smith, 2017), it has broken the record of active user base (Piwek & Joinson, 2016), and so far there are more than 2.5 billion Snapssent per day (Smith, 2017). Snap is the common name for photos and videos shared on Snapchat. With its strong power and growing user base, Snapchat is also superior to other social media platforms. For example, Facebook put forward an acquisition proposal that was rejected by Snapchat. Today, Snapchat has more than 158 million daily active users and is one of the most popular platforms for young people. Both Snapchat and Instagram are social networking sites (SNS). They "are web-based platforms on which members can create personal profiles, express friendships, and engage in social interaction" (Phua & Jin & Kim, 2017, p. 115). However, Snapchaton can only be run through an application that can be downloaded for free on Android and IOS, but they cannot be accessed through any link through a PC or web browser. To understand the features and specifications of such an important platform, a brief but detailed description of Snapchat is essential. Open the application, the first screen the user sees is the camera, ready to start recording and taking pictures. The option in the upper right corner of the screen is to brighten the photo. The flash function and front and rear camera switching buttons are located at the bottom of the screen. When you swipe to the left with your finger, the user can access the interactive part of the platform and can start a conversation. When you swipe to the right, you will find stories where users can see their own stories and stories created by people they follow. When swiping the screen to the left, users will find themselves in the "chat" part of the app. Here, users will receive all comments or conversations related to any photos or videos they posted in the "Story" option, as well as a more general option to start a conversation with anyone they follow. It is in this part of the application that users can receive private snapshots that are shared with them only as a single user. When swiping to the right, users will enter the "Stories" page, where they can access their stories, delete any videos or photos they uploaded there, download and see how many views they have also received. This is the most important part of this research application, because it is the place where the user's "story" is stored, and it is also the place where the user can access the "stories" of their followers. The "Story" page is a place to tell a story, and it is also a place to hear the story. Figure 1 shows the three description screens available in the application. 2.1.2. Instagram The "Story" function in Instagram works in different ways. Although Snapchat was introduced and revolved around “stories” when it was launched, the feature was only launched on Instagram in August 2016 (Instagram blog, 2017), and it completely changed the visual effects of the application. When Instagram was first launched in 2010 (McNely, 2012), Read Less