Why Are Vine Videos Exactly 6 Seconds Long?
Every time I pull out my phone and snap a few shots of our family outings, the Vine icon beckons. And each time I give in to the urge to share those six-second snaps of eye candy, I wonder the same thing...
Why six seconds?
Laura Sydell of NPR's All Things Considered recently sat down and interviewed Vine co-founder Dom Hofmann as to why Vines have the unique time limit. After all, popular sharing site Instagram offers a full quarter minute to capture that cute cat moment or your kid blowing out the birthday candles.
According to Hofmann, it took a number of days of experimenting with a variety of video lengths, varying from five to ten seconds. Five was too short, while that one extra second "allowed for the aesthetic feel the creators wanted but preserved the quickness they wanted to promise users."
Hofmann went on to say that six seconds allows "the average person to easily share and make a video on his smartphone." It's exactly that simplicity of use and social integration that Vine's 40 million users have enjoyed since the launch of the service just 7 short months ago.
Why the looping? It has a lot to do with the short video length. While aesthetically pleasing, videos that are only six seconds, according to Hofmann, "end very quickly and that felt anti-climactic." The looping provides the feel of a longer caputured moment, which can be enjoyed over and over again if it catches your eye.
For me personally, it's the challenge to try to seamlessly make the video's end snap back into the beginning that adds another level of fun to using Vine. I often catch myself looking for something in near-perpetual motion to share — like the ocean or a ferris wheel.Continued on the next page