All the Kids Are Right – Slate Magazine
Photo illustration by Slate.
Snapchat recently shipped a major redesign of its app, an update designed to address a two main issues: to make the app less confusing for us olds, and to bring the company one step closer to its goal of complete social media domination. To accomplish this, Snapchat lumped all of your friend-related interactions—both chats and stories—into one half of the app and transformed the other half, the Discover section, into a brand-centric media mecca. Unfortunately, Snapchat’s core user base, the under-20 set, is displeased with the changes—if not downright mutinous over them.
More than 585,000 angry Snapchat users have now signed a Change.org petition to restore Snapchat to its unupdated glory. Reasons for signing range from “The new [Snapchat] update is trash” to simply “Ew.” With more than 587,000 ratings, the latest version of the app has garnered a lowly two-star score on the App Store. “I liked having everyone’s stories and my messages in a separate place, and the best friends/streaks emojis are so small now, I can almost guarantee I’ll lose all my streaks because I won’t be able to tell where they are,” one app reviewer, ThatsJustHowItIs, wrote. A streak, for the unfamiliar, is when Snapchat users direct message one another back and forth for consecutive days. Some teens will keep streaks going for months at a time; it’s a source of pride and a measure of success—not to mention an incentive to keep snapping—on the app.
In trying to simplify its overall user experience and increase user growth, particularly among those over age 34, Snapchat inadvertently completely bungled the app’s main draw—its chat