Daily Archives: March 18, 2017

Cameras Are Keyboards

This post inspired by two thought-provoking articles; both about Snap/Snapchat. On February 13, 2017, the  New Yorker featured Why is Snap Calling Itself a Camera Company? a piece written by Om Malik. Snap Makes a Bet on the Cultural Supremacy of the Camera, written by Farhad Manjoo, appeared on The New York Times website on March 8, 2017.......... This 90 second video summarizes Snap/Snapchat:   ……………………… ‘Sexting,’ a word which originated in 2002, symbolizes the evolution of photo-based communication. First popularized by Snapchat, sexting exemplifies how  photography’s purpose has expanded beyond documentation. Photos are now components of digital conversations; the equivalent of words or phrases. Photo-based visual culture is transforming our relationship with the world, from the personal to the political. Cameras have become the new keyboards. Snapchat exemplifies the triumph and importance of  this new  photograph-based visual culture. This visual culture also includes  drones, emojis, selfies, QR codes, GIFS, very small action cameras, the role of cameras in self-driven vehicles, AR, VR, the possibilities that exist between photographs and search engines (such as Lens by Pinterest), and the relationship between photographs and products on smartphones. It’s understandable why cameras are being referred to as “third arms”. ………………………………. Snapchat’s recent IPO touched 24 million dollars and was the talk of Wall Street. Snapchat, or Snap as it now calls itself, has one hundred and fifty-eight million daily users generating 2. 5 billion snaps per day.  Its S.E.C. filing included the phrase that “images created by smartphone cameras contain more context and richer information than other forms of input like text entered on a keyboard.” Snap calls itself a camera company, but its first cameras, called Spectacles, were released in 2016, five years after the company began. Snapchat was initially known for allowing users to easily send photos that would soon disappear; ie. user-generated ephemeral content. Snapchat made its mark with sexting. Now, Snapchat is expanding into areas like content production, a promising development now that millennials have left cable. From  Farhad Manjoo’s NY times article, the following pieces of information -Gretchen McCulloch, a linguist, is writing a book on how the internet is changing language. -Phatic communication, a raison d’etre for emojis and more -  Oren Soffer: Snapchat brings us back to a time before the printing press/the mass usage of text and writing, when information was disseminated orally. Snapchat. Photography. Data. Search. VR. AR. Images. Ideograms. Kodak. About me: I am completing a business plan for an image-based VR startup.(WordPress seems to always mangle my nicely formatted posts. This  layout issue doesn't happen with my books...)