Popular social media app Vine discontinued by Twitter (old)

Andrew Shermoen

The famous social network service Twitter announced last Thursday, Oct. 27 that it would be discontinuing popular video sharing app Vine. The announcement came as a shock to both fans and content creators alike responding quickly on social media with “#Vineisdead.” The Vine team announced on their blog that, while the app would be discontinued soon, it was not an immediate change.

Vine was created in June 2012 by Dom Hofmann, Rus Yusupov, and Colin Kroll. The brilliant video-sharing app served as a social-media model that allowed users to record six second long videos highlighting their everyday lives. The idea was marketed as a peek into the lives of people around the world without them having to write about it. The brevity of a tweet in the beautiful scope of full-color video from increasingly improving smart phone cameras. Quickly the app grew into something greater. Vine became a place where comedy thrived, and it isn’t surprising it a catalyst for a new movement in wildly popular humor.

Polonius infamously said in Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” that “brevity is the soul of wit” and Vine proved that cliché with how quickly it rose to popularity by providing creators with a unique forum to release humorous glimpses into everyday life. Vine was a popular breeding ground for surrealism and non-sequiturs. The brief beginning of a Vine would set up a premise that was sure to head in a logical direction before something absurd happened.

Vine creator Andrew B. Bachelor, known on the app as King Bach, made a well-known Vine that quickly became an internet sensation overnight. The vine found Bach being asked to help a woman reclaim her purse after she has been robbed. After yelling “I’ll save you,” he proceeds to run up a wall and do a backflip. As the victim laments that the thief has already escaped Bach smirks at the camera and says “that backflip though.” The next few hours found amateur Viners repeating the punchline in increasingly confusing ways. This was the kind of absurd humor that flourished on Vine; a community of people latching onto a single joke and extrapolating it in hundreds of ways.

Internet meme culture was already at an all-time high when Vine was released to the public, but the service offered a newfound appreciation for quick, heavy punchlines. Vine may be disappearing, but its impact on internet culture is still seen today. Comedic videos, not even on the Vine app, have a desire to go for shorter jokes rather than longer. These videos seem to see more share-time amongst friends and have bigger cultural impact. Placing John Cena into a random movie scene and blaring his theme song became one of the most popular memes of 2015 and most of that was done outside of Vine. Creators of that meme simply preferred Cena videos to be short. It’s a testament to the level of impact that Vine had on comedy as a whole.

Twitter announced that while the change will not be immediate the app will be nixed in the near future. Current Vines will be available on Twitter for archival purposes but the service and the ability to create new Vines will no longer be available. It’s likely that Vine’s closure was decided after its user base dropped dramatically in the last few years. Fellow social-networking apps Snapchat and Instagram added features similar to Vine’s core use that likely caused the apps untimely fall. Co-founder Rus Yusupov who left the company in 2015 tweeted after the announcement “Don’t sell your company!” Referring to his disdain for how Twitter handled the app that he helped create.