Ephemeral messaging has become increasingly popular this past year after the 3 year old app Snapchat finally made a boom, leaving the likes of Facebook scrambling after their share of the market after an unsuccessful buyout attempt. Facebook’s first shot at the ephemeral market started with the release of Slingshot – the messaging app that required a user to send an image back to the sender in order to unlock their received image, closely followed by Facebook-owned Instagram who launched Bolt. Trials are undergo in New Zealand to take disappearing media one step further.
The new feature being tested by Facebook allows users to schedule the automatic deletion of their posts, ranging from 1 hour to 7 days. This new option is only currently a small pilot for the iOS app, being introduced purely due to there being such a high interest in automatically deleted posts, especially in regards to expired data that is no longer in date, such as campaigns etc.
An issue with expiring posts is that other users are unable to share its content due to it only being available for the limited time of which it is relevant, meaning the likes of marketing campaigns would be useless as users would not be able to share it in order to expand the audience. The feature is currently limited to New Zealand where many apps are usually tested, however more specific details to the feature are currently unknown due to not being able to access it in England.
Facebook have already had some negative press so far this year with their study which aimed to manipulate user emotions, so let’s hope that this time the press remains only positive.