You Could Be Paid To Post Snapchat Photos and Videos, Patent Filing Suggests

Snapchat Inc. could begin paying users to post photos and videos, according to patent filings.

Through its popular Live Stories feature, the Venice company produces highlight reels of events across the world made up of user-submitted images related to specific cities, sports games, concerts or other occasions. In most cases, these videos are available for a day for any Snapchat user to watch. But only those lucky enough to bring their smartphone or tablet to a relevant location are invited to submit to a Live Story.

Organizing the highlights is a laborious process that forces workers to sift through tens of thousands of posts, though the payoff easily can soar to 20 million viewers on a single story.

But patent applications from December 2014 that were made public Thursday, per regulation, suggest Snapchat at least has an idea in mind to offer more stories without many additional curators. Surfacing greater amounts of well-organized material is crucial to get users to spend more time with Snapchat, a 5-year-old start-up aiming to develop a multibillion-dollar business by selling ads between the content.

The filings reveal that Snapchat automatically could analyze annotations on an image, including text and digital stickers, to prompt users to place their image in a collective gallery. In other words, people who type some variation of "Clippers!!!" on top of their photo during a Clippers basketball game would have access to a library of images related to the game.

Especially intriguing, the company could use computer vision technology to identify objects in an image -- say, a Coke bottle -- to encourage a user to share the shot in a Coca-Cola-sponsored story. Contributors could walk away with cash through a flat fee or some other deal based on views or sales generated by the story.

There have been rumblings about a similar system coming to...

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