Snapchat has released a new report that provides a deeper insight into the importance of online privacy and the key concerns users have about online content.
The report, based on a survey of over 13,500 people in 11 markets, reveals some valuable considerations for both platforms and merchants, and strengthens the logic behind some of the latest social apps, in terms of increased user control, encryption and more. It also sheds light on how such controls – or lack thereof – can affect people’s online behavior.
The review is interesting – you can download the complete 28-page Snap report here, but in this post we will look at some of the key points.
First, Snap notes that both Snapchatters and non-Snap users are concerned about online privacy, and 81% of respondents say online privacy is important. At the same time, only 65% said they were satisfied with their current privacy options.
This is a key gap in the current process of digital connectivity that highlights the need for enhanced controls on this front and more options, such as private messaging and audience control, to reassure users.
What is the next key point – the report highlights three key benefits of digital privacy, based on responses.
Every aspect allows for more open communication, and without appropriate measures social platforms are unable to meet these needs.
Self-expression is one of the most important elements, with users feeling freer to communicate when satisfied with the tools and privacy options available.
Indeed, most respondents stated that privacy concerns affect what they share online and how they communicate.
This is an interesting consideration – originally, with the advent of MySpace, Twitter and Facebook, there was a new sense of freedom and capacity to share your voice and connect with people who think the same around the world, based on common interests. Over time, this has gradually shifted, as more controversy and concern has arisen over excessive sharing or insight into the past, leading to more and more people becoming more closed-minded and reluctant to share publicly.
Which makes sense, but it also means that what we see on the internet is often not representative of the breadth of views, as many people are concerned about what sharing their thoughts and opinions might mean and how it could potentially be used against them. This is why more privacy controls can open up a higher level of expression and engagement, and why more people are looking for advanced tools, such as message encryption, to gain that extra level of security.
Which is also why Snapchat has managed to maintain and increase its audience, despite increasing competition in the space.
Snapchat has always been presented as a key alternative for more intimate, private discussion, a place to connect friends, not to broadcast your life to the world. And while it’s also more restrictive, in terms of content, Snape’s approach clearly resonated with many people and allowed him to occupy a niche in the wider social space and messaging space.
The report also goes into depth about the full reasons that affect how and why people share content on social media, and the tools people rely on to improve their experience.
Here are some interesting insights and considerations, which, as noted, largely reflect the latest social media innovations in improved audience control, evolving tools for private messaging, security features, reporting, and more.
Without these elements, people simply will not share, and will not engage online at the same rate. And as we move into the next phase of the digital connection, where we are likely to spend even more time online and potentially expose ourselves even more, such measures will remain critical to protecting people.
Here you can read the complete Snapchat report ‘Global Perceptions of Privacy’.
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