Former Vice President, Al Gore, was at the SXSW 2013 recently. During a discussion with journalist Walt Mossberg, he discussed a number of issues. Among these was, quite interestingly, the increasingly popular Snapchat app, the success of which Al Gore credited to the ‘stalker economy.’
As soon as Al Gore mentioned ‘Snapchat’, there was a flurry of responses on the social media. Frankly, most of us know Al Gore either as a political person or as an environmental activist. And so, hearing him speak about something which is quite ‘hip’ in the tech world these days was a pleasant surprise.
Dishing out his brief analysis of Snapchat, Al Gore stated that according to him, the quick success of the app was simply because of the fact that people who interact closely with the technology simply no longer feel safe today. And that is why, they like the idea of sending out a message and have it ‘self-destruct’ at a given time, leaving behind no digital traces.
Of course, there’s more to Snapchat than that, especially the frequently cited possibility that the success of the app among teens could be owed to the trend of sexting. However, Al Gore too had a valid point when he said, “The stalker economy, I hope, is causing people to reach a gag point.”
He was referring to a digital world where everything we do or say is not safe any more and everyone fears that his or her information may be accessed by someone else or that the digital activity may be monitored. Gore further elaborated on the trend, citing a number of other examples to substantiate his point well.