Snapchat’s first Our Story collaborative photo experiment was strictly an opt-in affair where you had to add a user to see it at all. However, the ephemeral image service is now trying something much more ambitious: it’s giving every user access to Brazil Final Live, a group photo album that lets sports fans share pictures themed around the World Cup match between Argentina and Germany. Snapchat tells The Verge that it’s curating the images to keep them on topic, but it’s otherwise taking a relatively hands-off approach; while you’ll automatically see the Brazil feed in your friend list, you’re not encouraged to use it.
Snapchat may be best known for its “ephemeral” messaging, but the company is experimenting with a new way to share live events. Just hours before the World Cup final between Argentina and Germany, all Snapchat users were given access to “Our Story” — a collection of curated Snaps from users in Brazil. The continuous stream of Snaps is an equally surreal and exciting way of experiencing an event. In a way, the masses of unknown faces allow you to live vicariously through World Cup visitors. However it makes you feel, it’s clearly a new way of viewing a live event that’s entirely discrete from both traditional media (like television) and other forms of social media like Twitter or Instagram. This isn’t the first time that Snapchat has experimented with “Our Story” — it tested the feature during the Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC) music festival last month. Unlike last time, however, Snapchat is sharing this Story with all of its users. To view the EDC “Our Story,” you had to opt-in by adding a user to your friend list. The mysterious appearance of a Story in users’ feeds has caused some confusion — plenty of users on Twitter have no idea what the “Brazil Final Live” Story is.