Last week Instagram added video. It shouldn’t have been a surprise; they’ve have always talked about video and with the recent success of Twitter’s Vine it must have seemed like natural progression, but that hasn’t prevented the inevitable backlash.
The criticism has stemmed mostly from the belief that the beauty of Instagram was in its doing just one thing perfectly. The sceptics fear that simplicity has now been compromised and cast grave doubt on the implciations for user experience. Videos, even at just 6 or 15 seconds, are more difficult to digest. You can’t scan over a video; each one requires a level of engagement and commitment that, if disappointing, completely disrupts your experience.
One solution proposed is that you should be able to choose between video and images, so that you can go back to enjoying Instagram in its original form which seems a very sensible solution. What’s for sure is that if they want to start monetising the platform (which they admit is on the horizon) then they can’t afford to go unsettling their core audience.