Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel explains how social media has changed identity, deletes his tweets

Who are you?

According to Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel, social media and instant expression have changed conceptions of identity. In a rather humorously low-quality video explaining what Snapchat is, Spiegel explains that previously, people would conceive identity based on an accumulation of everything they’ve ever done. But now, in an age of instant expression where users can use Facebook or Snapchat to express where they are and how they are feeling in the moment, identity is conceived based on who they are in the moment.

This change has led to a difference in how photography is used. Before, photography was used for memories, and people could look back on their photographs and all the things they’ve done to realize who they are. Now, photographs are used for talking, and Spiegel explains this is why so many people are using Snapchat everyday, as “ephemeral media” is a more accurate representation of how people perceive themselves in this age. Given how sent photos disappear in mere seconds, Snapchat embodies this notion.

Reinforcing this “live in the moment” philosophy, Spiegel and Snapchat co-founder Bobby Murphy have both deleted every tweet they’ve ever written.

“He likes to live in the present,” Snapchat told the Wall Street Journal.

Snapchat has proven to be incredibly popular, especially with younger people, as Snapchat is nearing 200 million active users.

Photo: Evan Spiegel, CEO of Snapchat. (Jae C. Hong/Associated Press)


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