And, once again, Instagram has taken a page from Snapchat's playbook.
This time, the Facebook-owned photo and video sharing platform is taking inspiration from Snapchat's Discover tool by curating user-generated videos of concerts and sports events. The new feature is simply called the Event Channel, found in Instagram's Explore tab.
"Like the rest of Explore," Instagram notes, "this new channel is personalized for you and highlights events you might like."
How Instagram's Event Channel Works
To make you "feel like you're in the front row," the channel throws in a mix of videos based on what you've been liking and who you've been following, only this time the content comes from fellow Instagram users who are fans or attendees at an event and not a celebrity's social media or PR team. The curated videos therefore offer variety.
The clips can range from a bird's eye view of the stadium from the bleachers to a closeup shot from the mosh pit to even on-the-ground footage of events.
If, for instance, you're a fan of a particular artist who is in concert or an athlete who is in a match, you can get a load of fan-made videos even as the event happens, thanks to this new Explore subsection.
While these curated videos are available only in the U.S. at this point, Instagram promises to roll out the feature worldwide soon.
Another Snapchat Ripoff?
Earlier this month, Instagram introduced "Stories," a feature that shares the name of (and possibly even pays homage to) Snapchat's signature functionality. Instagram users can post videos and photos that are set to disappear after 24 hours. These stories are placed high up in the feed to make it easy for one's followers to view the content.
And with fleeting moments captured in these short episodes, you no longer need to worry about sharing one too many posts and flooding your friends' streams since the Stories will eventually vanish. Social media marketers might find the approach useful because it eliminates the spammy nature of advertising on such platforms.
Instagram realizes how very similar the feature is to the original Snapchat format that, in an interview with TechCrunch, Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom says Snapchat "deserves all the credit."
Now, Instagram has unveiled the new Event Channel, which works in a similar way to Snapchat's Discover, that one might wonder if Instagram is really out to rip off its rival's best loved features.