Following the launch of their news portal ‘Discover’, Snapchat are making further forays into the world of reporting by advertising for journalists to join their staff and provide coverage of the 2016 US presidential election.
The Guardian reports; >‘An ad for content analysts politics & news on the Greenhouse recruitment site asks for “political junkies and news aficionados” with “experience in journalism and storytelling of all forms” to join a “new content team”. The photo-sharing platform has been quietly hiring journalists since late last year and in April picked up CNN star political reporter Peter Hamby as head of news’.
In addition to election coverage, the job advert indicates that the new team will also be involved in the curation of news stories using footage submitted to the apps ‘Our Stories’ stream, which gathers together user submitted stories around a location or event. This ‘citizen journalism’ functionality is becoming interesting as a media creation tool in itself. Gigaom.com recently reported viewing figures of 25 million for a single contibution to New Yorks Snowmaggedon ‘Our Story’. Mathew Ingram, writing for Fortune.com thinks that this should make media companies sit up and take notice; >‘Across the media landscape, companies large and small are trying to wrap their heads around mobile, and how smartphones and ubiquitous networking and emerging social behavior are changing news and content consumption. The New York Times has launched multiple apps like NYT Now, and keeps trying to figure out how they should work: Will people pay for them? Are they just aggregators? What makes them unique? Newspapers are also betting on tablet apps, mostly because they feel similar to the way the media business used to operate, but with glass instead of paper. Snapchat, meanwhile, has one hugely powerful tool at its disposal: It is brand new, and therefore it has no traditional business model, no legacy operations, no pension or infrastructure costs, and no concept of what the media industry used to be like, or should be like. All it knows is what users do, and what they want’.