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Gone in a Flash

by M.G. Siegler


Instagram product chief Kevin Weil helped Facebook beat Snapchat

Speaking of Instagram, enjoyed John Shinal's sit down with product chief Kevin Weil:

"If people are going to post multiple times throughout the day, the product needs to be more 'person-oriented' than 'feed-oriented," Weil explained.
That meant allowing users to post not only square photos but videos of varying shapes, sizes and lengths.
Instagram also has a culture designed for doing "the simple things first."
In the video, he says, "If you start simple, systems will get more complex (eventually)...If you start complex, you're in trouble."

I was skeptical of Instagram ever having success moving away from the square format -- since they owned it, and it made the feed so browsable -- but the framing of Stories as "person-oriented" versus "feed-oriented" strikes me as exactly right, and exactly what allowed them to make such a stark change to the format. 

Also love the mentality of doing "the simple things first" -- this works for startups and big companies like Instagram.


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