It is accusing that Snapchat stopped being culturally relevant when Kylie Jenner declared it killed and Rihanna disavowed it. This last weekend it seemed as if everyone was reloading, re-opening or trying Snapchat for the first time this year. The reason was two new Snapchat filters that allow users to look at sex versions of themselves by adding traditional masculine features (beard and short hair) or normative female characteristics (makeup, long hair and softer skin).
Filters spread quickly everywhere outside Snapchat. Modified selfies appeared over Twitter, Instagram Stories and even Facebook. It was immediately clear that participating in the fun online trend this weekend meant that you would download Snapchat in a few minutes, go through the process of coming back to a forgotten account and snap some selfies to be shared with friends ̵
Instagram Stories has pulled many people away from Snapchat, but there is something that Snapchat continues to do that draws people back: offering particularly creative filters. Snapchat is best as a platform for content creation, and people use it appropriately as a tool to make interesting images that they can share elsewhere. The same thing happened recently with Snapchat's baby filters, when people sent pictures using the filter over Twitter.
Snapchat has jumped in daily download rankings since the sex exchange filter took off as a trend, according to the web analytics company Similar Web. Celebrities like Miley Cyrus and Sarah Silverman shared their Snapchat pictures on Twitter and Instagram respectively. Often people who send their filtered selfies send them only to Snapchat to send their photos elsewhere. As YouTube creator Roly West tweeted "I love that Snapchat comes out with these new sex / baby face filters and everyone just downloads it again to just upload the photos to Instagram."
While the user's growth has stopped, Snapchat is not dead at all. Snap is dependent on moments like these to get people to use their app instead of the almost identical features offered on all Facebook objects. The question that remains is how long people will remain after a new filter hooks them in again. It is unclear whether people spend time on Snapchat when they log in again, or just use the filters to take themselves, save the pictures and leave.
There are many reasons why people may want to share photos of themselves on Instagram instead of Snapchat. The Facebook-owned platform's user interface is much nicer to use and easier to navigate, making it easier to follow friends, influencers and celebrities. It is likely that people you know use Instagram much more often than Snapchat. The number of active Instagram Stories users is more than three times the size of Snapcat's entire monthly user base.
Where Snapchat consistently hits Instagram is fun filters. Instagram has a selected number of filters that make you look good (shoutout to Kylie Jenner's lip filter filter), but the sillier effects do not work as well as Snapchats. When big trends such as the sex change filters appear and everyone wants to feel that they are in a fast-moving moment, it's important that you install or download Snapchat – even if you only share Twitter for a few dozen likes and compliments.  What I learn from the snap filter that makes people a boy / girl is that sex is a social construction and that people still use snapchat
– Adam Rippon (@Adaripp) May 12, 2019  Instagram has become a go-to social app for friends sitting next to sites like Twitter and Facebook. But none of these apps can create instant around filters in a way Snapchat does, which leads to curious people who want to kill a few minutes and feel they are part of something that happens right now . This also applies when said filters are problematic and extremely harmful to a whole group of people.
Snapchat still has 186 million daily users, many of them teenagers. However, it is increasingly clear that many people's perception of the purpose of the app has changed. They continue to re-install or log in once when a new filter pops up on Twitter and Instagram, but they will not necessarily add their contributions to the trend alone at Snapchat. We know that something cool happens on Snapchat because our friends have warned us about it – through Instagram stories and funny tweets.