Keeping Up Appearances

When Snap went public in March, investors had high hopes that they’d see Facebook like returns on their IPO dollars.  That might be a stretch, but the thought was that Snap would be a good addition to a portfolio.  Since the IPO, shares have fallen by 28% due investor concerns surrounding slowing user growth and lack of profitability.  Class actions lawsuits seeking to protect investors have followed.

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In the wake of Uber’s troubles, comparisons between Uber’s former CEO Travis Kalanick and Snap’s CEO Evan Spiegel have been common place.  Now that Snap is a publicly held company, Spiegel is more likely to lose his job as a result of poor user growth and low profitability.  Both are known to be egotistical, brash, and narcissistic and both have gotten in trouble for their comments.

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Monday night Snap threw a party in Cannes at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.  Ironically, there were no cameras allowed in the event and guests were not allowed to take photos.  Additionally, journalists were not allowed into the party either.  Sounds like Snap likes being in the camera business, but doesn’t want the cameras in its business.  Perhaps they are trying to maintain an illusion of austerity in the face of the numerous class action suits or a contrived sense of exclusivity.  Meanwhile stateside, Kalanchick resigned Tuesday as CEO of Uber.

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When it comes to maintaining illusions, it isn’t just powerful CEOs, but regular people via their social media accounts.  Society has created a web of perceived perfection via filters, influencers and viral videos.  The illusion becomes dangerous when people can no longer cope with real life against the juxtaposition of the illusion.  If your kids were to look at your pics, would they see you or would they see a contrived version of you?

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