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No filters and more “authentic”. How does BeReal, the new “anti-Instagram” social network that attracts young people, work?



No filters and more "authentic".  How does BeReal, the new "anti-Instagram" social network that attracts young people, work?

“BeReal will not make you famous. If you want to become an influencer, you can stay on Tik Tok and Instagram,” the app’s description reads.

“It’s time to BeReal [Ser real]”. This is the notification that Joana, Eva, Mariana and about three million people around the world receive once a day, always at different times, from the new BeReal social network. It can be 09:00, 12:00, 20:00 : 00 or even later – the notification pops up unexpectedly. By tapping the notification, users have two minutes to take two photos at the same time: one on the front camera of the phone in selfie mode, and the other on the back camera to show you what is in front of you .

The goal is to share with friends what is being done at the moment, without filters or other image manipulation. It is at this moment that this application, created in 2019 by a French startup, positions itself as a social network. “anti-instagram”. “BeReal will not make you famous. If you want to become an influencer, you can stay on Tik Tok and Instagram,” reads the app’s description on App Store you’re on Google games.

It is this concern for authenticity that attracts young people all over the world if they were not the target audience of this social network, as explained by Graça Canto Moniz, a social media specialist who defines this application as a social network. “from a niche”.

“This is what management calls a blue ocean strategy. [Estratégia Oceano Azul]when we already have a market with such a large offer that the new items that are successful are niche things. And this is a great example of that,” he said in a statement to CNN Portugal.

BeReal was designed to match the values ​​of the younger generation, the so-called Generation Z and millennials, who tend to be “social media users who make more informed decisions” without ever neglecting the values ​​they defend. “Authenticity is one of those values,” says Graça Canto Moniz. “That’s why it’s so important to them [os jovens] register moments of authenticity in your daily life,” he adds.

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With this social network, young people don’t feel “so much pressure” to post photos, unlike what happens on other apps. “To post a photo on Instagram, I need to edit it, ask my friends what they think,” says Eva Rua, 21, who installed BeReal about two weeks ago. In this application, he says, because “it’s hot at the moment” where there is no possibility to use image editing tools, there is much less need to post “perfect” photos.

Joana Ribeiro, 26, also installed this social network just 15 days ago, but already notices a difference compared to others: “It is more authentic because it does not give a chance to “lie” that is already visible on other networks. There are no filters, and since the photo is taken with both cameras at the same time, it is meant to capture reality.”

A “real” social network?

Even though it bills itself as a “real” social network, the truth is that you can always manipulate the images we share – not with filters, but by “playing” with notifications. It’s true that the notification pops up unexpectedly, but the user can open it now or later. The two minutes for taking photos only count from the moment the notification is opened.

“If you got a notification when you just woke up and you’re still all tousled, you can always get ready early and only then take a picture,” says Joana Ribeiro, who admits that while the concept of the app is original, in practice, in As a result, it is no different from other networks.

Besides being able to “play” with notifications, users have another way of manipulating the photos they post – which, by the way, is at the heart of all social media: cropping. Users only show what they want to show.

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“This new chain is sold with a value of authenticity that goes through the non-artificial, but still there is some artificiality because any photo only shows what we want to show. It’s a marketing strategy,” says Vitor Ferreira, a sociologist who studies youth, among other things.

Clubhouse business model and example

Despite its success among young people, the truth is that this app, created by a French startup in 2019, is “still in its infancy,” as Graça Canto Moniz explains. “The last time I saw it, it didn’t even have three million users. If we want to compare, Snapchat has 347 million users. This application is still growing. And I don’t know if it will be very successful,” he problematizes.

This is because, in an uncertain economic context like the one we are currently facing, “investors want to make less risky decisions and will put their money into other things”, so “there will be a shortage of capital for these businesses.” expert predicts.

“I don’t know if [esta rede social] this will be the new Snapchat, I’m a little skeptical about it, ”she admits.

In addition, as is the case with other social networks, BeReal will have another problem: the profitability of the application justifies the capital invested. Unlike Facebook, which “lives off ads” and other apps, BeReal has no ads, so it’s not yet known what its business model will be.

An application whose business model has also raised some doubts and which has also recently gained a lot of popularity was Clubhouse, a social network that allows you to communicate only by voice. The app was launched in April 2020 and took advantage of the pandemic restrictions to establish itself as a social network that brings people together.

Andrew Chen of Andreessen Horowitz venture capital firm justified the company’s investment in the Clubhouse to “reinvent the category [das redes sociais] in all the right ways, from your content consumption experience to how people interact, empowering your creators.”

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But the success of this application was “the shortest sun”. Clubhouse reached its user “peak” in March 2021, less than a year after launch, when it had 10 million active users. this number has dropped to 3.5 million a few months later, in September 2021

The removal of anti-covid restrictions seems to be the most commonly used argument to justify the loss of interest in the application, but the business model could also affect this result. This is because the Clubhouse relies solely on investor capital – it has raised $110 million since launch – thus not counting ad revenue or other forms of monetization.

“You never know what the outcome of these applications will be. When there is advertising, it is clear how they will be monetized, how investors who invest money in it will return. impossible to understand,” sums up Graça Canto Moniz.

Why another social network?

Like Eva and Joana, Mariana Ribeiro also recently, about 15 days ago, installed the social network BeReal. She met the application in a conversation with a Dutch friend – in the Netherlands, this social network has long been a success among young people, she says. Since she was already sharing her everyday moments with her friend, she ended up trying to do the same with this app.

But that was an exception to her social media consumption habits, says the 24-year-old, who only uses Instagram in addition to BeReal. Mariana recently felt the need to do a “social media detox” and decided to remove many of the people she follows and even her followers from her profile.

“It got to the point where I was confronted with the toxicity of social media and I thought, it can’t be, i can’t afford to influence things i don’t even know if it’s true or not“, Account.

BeReal has already amassed around three million users, which is still very low compared to Snapchat’s 347 million. Photo: Jakub Pozicki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Even though Eva Rua doesn’t feel the same way as Mariana, she says some of her friends have chosen not to install BeReal because they “don’t want more social media”, saying the ones they already have absorb “a lot of time” in their daily lives. life.

In this dilemma between the desire to have a digital presence and the desire to enjoy everyday moments without using a screen, the question remains: why do we feel the need to have multiple social networks?

Sociologist Vitor Ferreira explains that social networks are a kind of “stage” where people can express themselves and they are even more important for young people as they discover and build their identity, for which they feel the need to present themselves the way they are. want. be perceived.

“Social networks for young people are, first of all, a space for communication, self-presentation, self-expression – but also for self-expression,” he explains. This is because the “I” we show to the other is always presented “in context”, hence the concert stage analogy where “we only show what we want to show”.

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“I was sick for a year and a half,” Alberta Marquez Fernandez recalls a period of absence from television.



“I was sick for a year and a half,” Alberta Marquez Fernandez recalls a period of absence from television.

Alberta Marquez Fernandez was one of the guests on the SIC afternoon program on Tuesday, October 4th. In an intimate conversation with Giulia Pinheirothe journalist revealed her most personal side and remembered the period of more than a year during which she was away from the screens.

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