Thoughts on Facebook Slingshot

Facebook’s answer to Snapshat, Slingshot, was released yesterday. The take on instant photo and video sharing is interesting with a strong direction towards increasing engagement in communication. For those who missed the principle Slingshot let’s you send photos (or videos) to contacts, to see the photo your contact should send one back. As with Snapchat the photos are deleted once they been seen.

As it happens, I’ve been supervising  Chloé Manceau‘s research thesis on multi-device communication and engagement. Chloé comes from the Information Architecture Masters in Lyon. She started by interviewing 8 people from teenagers to highly connected professionals. The main take away from these interviews was that engagement in communication was not binary (engaged or not). And thus that engagement does not mean instantaneous reply, but rather sustained exchanges. Based on these insights she designed a dual system to develop sustainable forms of engagement : A multi-device dashboard inviting to get back in touch with people whose conversations are “hanging”. And Missive, a messaging service with once a day delivery.

Chloé is defending today, thesis and videos are upcoming.