Social media network Vero has had a lot of attention over the past few days, some positive and some not so much.
Vero actually launched years ago, positioning itself in direct opposition to Facebook and Instagram. The platform has received lots of press attention over the weekend with a number of high profile social media influencers joining the platform.
The name ‘Vero’ means ‘truth’ and in their manifesto the network positions itself as “A new way to be social online”. With some users hailing it the new Instagram, in their own words “Vero is a social network for anyone who loves anything enough to share it – and wants control over who they share it with.”
So what’s different about this platform that claims to “put control back in the hands of the user”?
Vero lets you share movies, TV, books, places, photos and links with a scrapbook-like feel. You can share your film recommendations with friends, link to your favourite articles, videos, see what your friends are reading and share your must-reads, create mini photo albums of photos and video, edit and add filters to photos, sample songs and add songs through Apple Music to your playlists as well as check-in at locations around the world and add your own photos and recommendations.
The network also lets you filter your followers into categories of ‘Close Friend’, ‘Friend’ or ‘Acquaintance’. You can then choose which kinds of posts you want to see from each follower. So if you know a friend who has great taste in music and always finds the latest up and coming artists you can select to see ‘Music’ posts from them.
Posts from you and your followers go straight into ‘Collections’ to build a “library of recommendations and passions” all in one place.
No Ads. No Algorithms
The platform won’t feature advertisers and highlights the lack of algorithms in their brand video “less of what makes social suck and more of what makes it great”, a much-debated topic at the moment particularly around Instagram.
With no advertisers Vero will eventually charge users to have an account, their subscription-based model means users will have to pay an annual fee to use the site. The app has a ‘buy now’ feature that lets users buy directly from posts, companies will have to pay to use this feature. The first million users to sign up will receive a free account.
‘Smarter social’ is a phrase they use a lot and on the surface the network seems to solve annoyances around other social platforms. Vero has a chronological feed that includes all posts. It also claims to avoid aggressive data collection techniques “Vero only collects the data we believe is necessary to provide users with a great experience and to ensure the security of their accounts.”
Too good to be true?
The app has had a number of technical issues and has been down or not working for large periods of time with many people struggling to sign up or unable to actually post when they do join. The network seems to be struggling with the huge interest around the app, “Due to very large traffic, we’re experiencing intermittent technical issues.”
Vero’s terms of service are also causing concern, particularly the agreement that the company have the right to use the content anywhere they like without paying royalties. They have been quick to point out however, that similar terms are included in most social media terms and they are necessary to allow content posted there to be shared and embedded.
To conclude the network looks like a great recommendation platform and if you’re looking for some inspiration for some new music or films it could be the app for you. I would say, it’s worth downloading while it’s free but for any budding creatives or artists be mindful of what original content you’re posting until you’re familiar with their terms of service.