A recent story by the Washington Post covered the decline of users on Vine, and spoke to the top users who abandoned it.
Two years ago, publications like the New Yorker were highly optimistic for the app’s future, going as far to say it was intertwined with the world of Hollywood. But now, as the user engagement declines and top viners leave for Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat, it seems the future holds something other than what was predicted.
As a popular viner myself, I can say for certain that I’ve witnessed this falling out for a long time now. The popular page of vine, a place usually dominated by the top 50 accounts, is now home to the viners who previously got no exposure. A video of mine would only get on the popular page once or twice before, but on today’s Vine, I’m featured almost every single time I post. This sort of underground upcoming is a direct result of Vine’s top users leaving, and others rising from their shadows.
Vine made a fatal mistake to begin with: the people they chose to spotlight their product. One of the best examples of poor taste is Vine’s ninth most followed user, Curtis Lepore. The featured Vine user was known for more than just his comedy though, speaking of course about his infamous rape allegations that led him to lose a spot in Rainn Wilson’s show “Hollywood and Vine”. Later on, Curtis took a plea deal, pleading guilty to felony assault with the rape charges dropped.
Another Vine featured star, Carter Reynolds, was seen in a leaked video pressuring a 16-year-old girl into having sex with him. The underage girl repeatedly says she doesn’t want to, and he continues on.
These faces of Vine’s community never portrayed much of a positive image, which must be why the product is failing to grow and most of its top executives have left.
On June 21st, Vine released a message saying that they would now allow videos longer than the standard 6 second clips. It was a clear attempt to fight back against Instagram’s 15 second video feature that stole so much of their attention, and so far, it hasn’t won many back. The same could be said for their last idea as well, the Windows 10 app that met a similar fate. Oh and the update before that one too. There’s a pattern here, and Twitter isn’t really taking note.
Still, while Vine has remained a baseline of relevance over the past three years, it’s obvious that Twitter has mismanaged the app into a fraction of what it once was, or even could have been. Of course poor judgement isn’t hard to find among the Twitter staff, as their own decline more than proves. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has been treading his own bit of water after tanking $TWTR stocks over social justice issues.
The future for both vine Twitter and Vine doesn’t look bright.