Vine is the new social network app created by Twitter that lets you create and share short six-second long videos and publish them to Twitter and Facebook. It features no post-capture editing and it limits the user to a fixed set of possibilities just as Twitter did when it first launched. At launch the app is only available in the iOS App Store optimized for the iPhone and iPod Touch. There's no word yet on when the app will be available on other platforms. Vine has been described as the new "Instagram for video" as it enables users to quickly capture video and publish them to social networks. Vine enters a crowded field of other similar standard or quality compromised video capture tools (e.g., Cinemagram, GLMPS, Tout, even YouTube with their recent camera capture app).
Vine features a feed-like stream of recently published looping videos, with additional user filtering by popularity, editor's picks, and some curated hashtags. Video starts loading and playing only when it is on the user screen, and in contrast to similar apps, it only plays the focused video’s audio, which goes away as the user scrolls to a different video.
There's an innovative way to capture the video and edit at the same time, by touching the screen the recording "head" advances and stops allowing for a video narrative to be composed until reaching a maximum of 6 seconds. Then users are confronted with a screen allowing them to share to Vine, Twitter and Facebook.
Vine's videos are captured in a video standard that is already native to most phones and browsers thus enabling the videos to be supported by Twitter cards and embedded and expanded from single tweets when seen on the desktop version of Twitter. In contrast to Facebook’s new video capturing tool, Vine is a stand alone app positioned as a new “art form” separate from Twitter’s text based tradition.
Vine is another way for brands to use Twitter as a channel for social interaction with the consumer, albeit via short visual bursts with more emotive content. Similar to Facebook video posts, brand should explore the most compelling video territory for their followers and fans. However, the six-second format will limit the possibilities, either focusing a brand’s efforts or frankly confounding them. Traditional creative agencies may struggle meeting the new formats, and indeed consumer, publisher, or artistic curated content may be more compelling. At the launch some brands have started to experiment with Vine creating playful and uncompromising videos "just for fun". For now it is mostly news organizations and TV channels, although we have already seen some examples by FMCG brands. It will most likely take some time for the platform, and brands approach to it, fully mature.
In terms of management, it will be challenging to manage shared login detail access by community and content managers, as for now there's no back-office self-serve way to manage Vine or to connect it to social media management tools, which may cause problems. For example, a few days after launch Vine hashtag searches resulted in many videos containing sensitive content (nudity, violence, or medical procedures). As a result, Vine has created a process to censor inappropriate videos and warn users of sensitive content with a preload warning message screen. However, expect more “sexting” incidents.
Consumers, brands, and agencies are just starting to get introduced to the app. With online video advertising set to grow by over 46.5% this year, Twitter may be setting the stage for a new online video advertising format to add to their growing efforts to commercialize the platform. A Twitter promoted Vine ad format may just be on their 2013 roadmap, along with an IPO.
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