On January 24, 2013, Twitter made national news when it released its brand new video sharing app, Vine. While users can already type a 140 character blurb about their life and share pictures of it on Instagram, users could not share video in the same way. Twitter has been thinking about this for a while, however.
Vine is different than other video sharing apps out there. It lets you shoot multiple short cuts to make one single, six second video. This process is easy, involves no editing, and easily links with a Twitter account; however, only a few days after its release, Vine has already caused controversy as many users are abusing Vine to record short pornographic and offensive scenes. Four days after its release, Twitter was bombarded with a publicity nightmare.
Dick Costolo posted the first ever Vine video on January 23. It embodies everything the service is capable of. In six seconds, he showed his preparation of steak tartare, and then linked it to his Twitter account. While millions of users have been exploring the PG-rated features of Vine, the New York Times was the first to point out that Vine was already being used to shoot six second pornographic clips. While this is not expressly forbidden by Twitter and Vine’s terms of service, Twitter does encourage users to use good judgment when posting any content. Vine users can flag videos they find offensive, and if the clip receives enough complaints, Twitter will issue a warning on the clip. Twitter is known as a proponent of the freedom of expression and is reluctant to censor tweets.
Twitter may not expressly forbid this adult content, but the Apple app store does. This may cause the app to be removed from the smart phone giant’s app store. Apple still promotes the app in their store as “the best way to see and share life in motion,” as well as a way to “create short, beautiful, looping videos in a simple and fun way.” For the large amount of users who do not abuse the app as a means for pornographic exhibition, Vine is a fun way to share tidbits of your life in a new way. Rather than snapping a photo or writing a text blurb, friends and family can now see a live snapshot of the noteworthy events of your life. Vine is a great app that is easily paired with Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
Vine is free in the major app stores, and it can be easily downloaded to any smart phone. It is important to wade through the massive amount of bad press to enjoy the core function of the app. To see for yourself what Vine is all about, be sure to download the app today!