So unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last few days then you would’ve heard of the new social media app, Vero. It’s actually been around since 2015 but it hasn’t really made any kind of impact in people’s social media lives until now when the app went from 600,000 world-wide users to become the number app on the app store and is forecast to attract 500,000 new users per day!
So what's the big deal? In response to the undeniably annoying privacy policies of ad-based social networks, billionaire businessman Ayman Hariri, son of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri (who is said to have a net worth of $1.33 billion according to Forbes ) launched Vero as an ad-free, algorithm-free platform to rival the likes of Instagram and Facebook. No small task.
And not without controversy either! Hariri was once CEO of a now defunct Saudi construction company which shut down due to mismanagement, finding themselves $3.5 billion in debt and leaving behind thousands of workers who were left unpaid after the collapse.
But that hasn’t stopped hundreds of thousands of people signing up for the new platform that promises to deliver where the others have fallen short. There’s even been a mass movement on Instagram with over 500,000 posts using the trending hashtag #Vero and users urging their followers to follow their new Vero account.
What’s the difference?
The first and biggest difference is that Vero promises to remain ad-free. Instead the company has opted for a subscription based service which is currently free to the first one million new signees- that explains the influx of new users, at least. They also promise that there’s no data mining unless it aids user experience but make of that what you will…
The next major difference is that the app displays new content in chronological order instead of using an algorithm to pick and choose what content is shown in your feed. So you should be able to see everything that was posted by the people you follow if you scroll down far enough.
Vero also gives you the option to categorize your connections and the people you follow into close friends, friends and acquaintances and choose which categories see your posts. Fortunately, no one else will know what category you’ve placed them in.
Not Just Photos
Another major difference is the ability to post URLs and link content from other apps such as iTunes. You can post links to music, books, movies and places and easily share the things that you’re passionate about. Has anyone else been watching Queer Eye on Netflix?? Tears.
When you post original content to Vero you maintain ownership over that content. However, by using the platform, you grant Vero permission to use your content as they see fit within the bounds of their T&C’s. There’s some concern surrounding Vero’s privacy policies and ownership of user-posted content. However, there’s nothing in their T&C’s that we haven’t seen already before.
By using Instagram, for example, you give them a non-exclusive, fully paid and royalty-free transferable, sub-license to use your content in any way they wish. Technically they could sell your content to third parties without infringing on copyright. They won’t, but they could. So we’re not worried about Vero’s policies at this point. Always use protection.
The influx of new users on Vero has actually been so huge that the servers have been unable to cope, repeatedly crashing their systems. This is a blessing and a curse for Vero but they’ve asked for patience and extended their offer of free subscriptions for new users while they fix the problem- so get in there while you still can.
The jury is still out on whether Vero will dominate the market or not but for now, there’s no denying the waves that it’s creating in the social media world. So decide for yourself and let us know what you think!