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Oh Snap! Teens Guide to Snapchat

In the words of my TEENAGE DAUGHTER!

Oh Snap!

Snapchat is a part of my everyday life. Seriously! Every. Single. Day. My parents say I am addicted, I say I am committed. I was fourteen when my friend introduced me to Snapchat. I was desperate to have it. All my friends had it and didn’t understand why I wasn’t able to download it; it was just an app. I begged my parents for months to let me download it. NO…no… NO… no… it was always the answer. After a while, I came back and decided to ask again, this time prepared. I argued, I could connect with those in California, you know my friends and family you took me away from. I may have tugged at their hearts a bit. A girls got to do what a girls got to do! They heard me out and FINALLY said yes. I had lots of restrictions at first, like:

  • I could only add people I personally knew, no celebrities. Sorry Ryan Gosling
  • My profile had to stay private, no public posts.
  • My parents were free to look at my Snapchat stories whenever they wanted- my dad said, ”I pay the bill, I will look at what I want.” And they did! A-L-O-T

and of course

  • I needed to be mindful of what I posted. If I couldn’t show it to my dad, I shouldn’t snap it.

They did, after a while, ease up and I was able to use it more freely.

Now that I was able to download the app, it took me awhile to get used to and understand it, but I got the hang of it. I friended everyone I wanted to have on my friends list and started to Snapchat. Except for maybe one or two of my friends, everyone I know is on it. Everyone loves how you are able to communicate with your friends by live video and private messaging. 

Snapchat is unique in its own way just like Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, and all the other social media apps. Snapchat allows you to see your favorite posts without scrolling through a ton of feed. You can just scroll down to their name and babam there is it! It can give you a glance into other people’s lives while also showing little moments of your own. Snapchat allows you to quickly upload a photo or video of what you are doing at that very moment. I know what you’re thinking, you can do that on all other social media apps, but what’s different is that most teenagers don’t want to post what they’re doing every single day on Instagram. They use Instagram to post the “cute” photos that they compete to get likes on and they use Facebook to post their “non-worthy” Instagram photos, but to let people know what they are up to that’s where Snapchat comes in.

Snapchat has some cool features. One of my favorite features is “streaks.” Streaks are a must!! A streak is something you can start with your friends that you must keep up with (unless you want to get yelled at by one of your friends for losing your streak). How it works is every 24 hours you have to send at least one snap to the person you want to have a streak with and after you’ve done that for three days a number will pop up to the side and it will keep up with how many days you’ve had a streak for. You can have streaks with as many people as you want. Something that comes along with streaks are called friend emoji’s. So you get emojis based off of what kind of a “friend” you are. These are all described in your settings manage friend emojis; it will explain everything!

 

Another one of the many features I enjoy would have to be using snap lenses on my pictures. Snap lenses are a fun way to spice up your pictures and send them to your friends, but be careful, some filters can make your face look funny and one slip of the finger and boom, you have just sent an embarrassing picture to someone who you didn’t want to have it.

 

If you want to be a part of the world of Snaps? Snap Map is a type of post that allows your personal post to become part of a world public stream. It will only last for 24 hours, but it’s fun to see posts from around the world. For instance, if you are in a certain area like Walt Disney World or it is a certain day like Mardi Gras or St. Patrick’s Day, you can post your picture on that public story and anyone who clicks that story will be able to view it, even if they are not your “friend.” If you don’t want your post public you might not want to use this feature. 

 

As you can see, Snapchat is a virtual way to stay connected with friends, all while having fun with filters, lenses and stickers.  Now, I’m teaching my parents how to use Snapchat and they love it!

If you want to join 158 million people on Snapchat, here’s how to start snapping.

Snapchat setup:

1)    Go to your app store and search “Snapchat” and click download

2)    Open the app and create an account

3)    Create a username

4)    Verify that you are a human

5)    Upload a snapcode selfie

And that’s it! Just 5 simple steps.

The Basics to get you started:

Snap: A snap is a photo or video you can send to one person or a group of people. You can set an amount of time you allow that snap to be seen and you can only replay it once so use it wisely!

Story: A story is a place where you can put snaps if you want all your friends to see it. Your snap will only stay on your story for 24 hours and after that it will disappear

Snap score: A snap score is located under your profile name when you swipe down from the camera. It shows how many times you’ve sent and received snaps from people or just posting to your story

Filter: A Snap filter is what you can put on your photo after taking the picture/video. You can put the temperature, your location, etc.

Snap lenses: A snap lens is a way to spice up your photos. All you have to do is touch and hold the camera screen on your face and multiple snap lenses will appear for you to choose from.

Snap code: A snap code is a QR code that is assigned to your snapchat when you first make it. From the camera screen, you swipe down and there it is. If someone ever wanted to add you on snap chat that is one way to do it. All they have to do is go to their camera on snapchat and press and hold the screen where your QR code is.

 

Snap code selfie: You can personalize your snap code by taking multiple pictures of yourself. This can be seen by all who follow you and any other snapchat users who find you. You can also download an app called “Bitmoji” and make your own bitmoji and upload that as your snapcode selfie.

Chat: A Chat is a way to message people without sending pictures of yourself. You swipe left from the camera filter and that will take you to all the conversations you’ve had with your snapchat friends. From there, scroll down to whatever friend you want to chat with and swipe left again. Once you have a conversation going, you will be notified when that person is typing and vis versa. You will also be notified if they take a screenshot of the chat or snap and vis versa.

Memories: A memory is a feature you can choose when you save a picture it can be saved either to your camera roll, to your memories (swipe down from camera screen), or to both. You can also upload pictures from your camera roll or memories to your story as well.

Locations:

Launching the app, opens to your camera.

To show your conversations, swipe left from camera.

To show peoples’ stories, swipe right from camera.

For your Snapcode and ways to add people, swipe down from camera. 

Swipe up from camera to show memories/camera roll

 

Happy Snapping!

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