Snapchat’s overall contribution to society may seem completely counter-productive. But that hasn’t stopped the VCs from piling in. The provider of self-destructing mobile photos has landed a boatland of money — $60M according to VentureBeat.
I should become a venture-capital investor, because this was a no-brainer, according to my deep proprietary on-the-ground research — namely, my 13-year-old daughter. She specializes in introducing me to the time-wasting behavior of her generation.
Every month my daughter gives me a full report of “what’s hot” among her friends, aged 12-14. She nailed the Hunger Games months before it hit the mainstream media, as an example. Lately, she has been telling me that Snapchat is by far the most popular app. Now they bag $80M.
Watch any 13-year these days and they are of course addicted to their mobile device — with most of the time spent on pointless, counter-productive activity. But take it a step further: Can you imagine a group of teenage girls sitting in a room together, spending hours taking disposable self-destructing pictures of themselves and sending them to each other — when they are all less than 10 feet away? This is the Snapchat phenomenon and I’ve witnessed it on almost a daily basis.
My own estimate is that the average teenage now spends 20% of their day conducting such activity.
Yes, to any civilized adult, this behavior seems at the very least odd and at the maximum extent completely bizarre, but it’s real.
Snapchat is cashing in on ephemeral time-wasting. Not a bad gig if you can get it.