By EMMA SWAIM
The video mobile app Vine was started in 2012, and just four months after its launch, was bought by Twitter for $30 million.
The app quickly took off, bringing popular Viners up to the top with it. Vine’s famous creators, named “Viners,” quickly grew large audiences who initially loved the six second time limit but soon demanded more.
The six second feature that originally drew in large audiences was soon drawing them away and ultimately leading to its demise.
At its height in 2013, Vine was used not only for comedy videos, but for advertising. Daft Punk revealed their album via Vine, Dunkin Donuts used a Vine as an advertisement later appearing on TV, a viral video using “Don’t Drop that Thun Thun Thun” led the song to appear on the Billboard Hot 100 and rapper Bobby Shmurda gained a record deal after a Vine of his went viral.
How did the trendsetting app die so quickly? It was due to the lack of time for audiences to fully appreciate their favorite Viners.
After falling in love with famous Viners such as Brittany Furlan, Lele Pons and Nash Grier, audiences wanted to see more of them, so they moved to social media platforms such as Instagram, Snapchat and YouTube, focusing more on advancing their careers instead of making content on Vine.
UHS student Maya Haider (Sr.) has over half a million followers on Vine and acknowledges the decline in the app’s popularity.
“After the app slowly started dying, I began a YouTube channel called ‘Glams’ with four other girls that I met through the Vine app that had over two hundred thousand subscribers in just under a year,” Haider said.
Lele Pons, Logan Paul and King Bach were some of the most successful Viners who left the app to achieve great things. The stars partnered with Facebook in the summer of 2016 to bring attention to the website’s new live stream feature. Pons, for example, was paid more than $100,000 by Facebook for her live streams.
Sarah Ware, the CEO of a social media focused advertising firm, Markerly, explained how Vine’s popularity diminished so quickly in an article by The Atlantic.
Ware said, “Vine engagements are at an all-time low…People are not posting as frequently and engagement is drastically going down.”
The lack of engagement was experienced firsthand by Haider, who commented that despite starting on Vine, she receives the most audience engagement on her Instagram.
Ware’s firm even found that the majority of Vine’s most popular entertainers have not posted since 2015.
Haider, who noticed the drop as well, said, “The app musical.ly launched around when Instagram released its video feature and I noticed a drastic drop in Vine’s popularity.”
Hollywoodlife.com interviewed Vine star Brittany Furlan about the shutdown who said, “Vine was like an old friend that was on life support for a really long time and Twitter finally pulled the plug on it.”
Viner Jason Nash told the website, “Honestly, most of us moved on a while ago. It’s dropped off a lot for sure but I was still growing on there… I guess it wasn’t enough.”
While to some Viners the shutdown came as a surprise, the most famous Viners have been aware of the possibility for almost a year.
In the fall of 2015, a deal was proposed at a meeting by Vine creators to the company: each Viner would post twelve Vines a month, in hopes of bringing their audiences back to the app, and each Viner would be paid $1.2 million each.
Vine rejected the proposition and, according to the Viners, was headed straight for defeat.
No one knew much about the proposed deal, and some have even speculated that the idea would not have worked had it been accepted because the app was past the point of fixing.
Haider said, “I had no idea this was proposed. I thought Instagram videos had already taken over.”
Vine’s lack of content and relevance led to Twitter’s official announcement in October 2016 that the app would be shut down.