Twitter built its empire around brevity. There were others in the microblogging field, most notably Jaiku and Pownce, that offered a longer format than Twitter. Conventional wisdom at the time was the the shortness of Twitter was its weakness, but it turned out to be its greatest strength. Now that they’ve introduced Vine, the Twitter app that allows users to upload 6-second videos and post them in their stream, it would appear that their hope in the world of video is that “brevity is the soul of wit.”
Did they cut it a little too short this time? Is 6 seconds enough time to put together a compelling video message? Perhaps the thinking was that since most people can read a Tweet in under 6 seconds, that they would like the videos on Vine to take about the same amount of time. The problem is that, at least in the early stages, there simply hasn’t been the rise of great Vine videos worth noting that the company likely wanted. Tweets are fine. They’re the perfect size to fit in a headline and link, a message about what’s going on at any given moment, or a short quote from a notable person.
Six seconds might be too short to duplicate the effect on video.
Maybe things will get better over time as people learn to condense their creativity. Let us know in the comments if six seconds are enough to make Vine popular.
As Willa notes in the image below, the early days of Vine are not much better than if Instagram would allow animated GIFs.