KERNEL GUIDE TO THE INTERNET

V is for Vine

By Ned Donovan

Vine began as an interesting social experiment, an app that gives six seconds for a user to create a masterpiece. Masterpieces so good that they can be repeated over and over until you simply become a mumbling mess repeating, “White girls be like” over and over again.

The widespread popularity of the app, combined with its ease of use, has created a new field of online content creators in a vein not too dissimilar from YouTube celebrities. Included in this category is wildly popular Jerome Jarre, the Frenchman not only “Vines” but also manages 20 of the most popular Viners.

In an interview with the Independent, popular British user Ian Padgham revealed that companies can pay up to $10,000 for a video from one of the app’s most popular users.

Some of the things to come out of Vine have been pretty fantastic, on-the-ground journalism at the sites of terrorism, and behind the scenes looks from places otherwise reserved for celebrity. However, there has also been a darker side to the social network, as highlighted by the case of one Vine “celebrity” who stands accused of raping another Vine “celebrity”. This however hasn’t dampened the spirits of its dedicated users, despite competition from Instagram Video.

It is amazing that an app that offers taking videos in a different way is apparently worth $30m. Whilst Vine is great for citizen journalism, that’ss not the lifeblood of the app, that hole is filled by people like Jarre and Padgham. Some have called Vine the perfect app for narcissists, and having considered the profiles of the top users, it’s very difficult to disagree.

If I haven’t put you off yet, and you would like a YouTube that never ends, welcome to Vine Peeker, the site that lets you watch endless Vines in real time as they are uploaded while you realise half of them are about cats or One Direction.