Snapchat emerged in 2012 as a social media alternative to Facebook, which began to lose its appeal as mobile phones became popular. The initial attraction of the app lay in its ephemeral nature. Selfies didn’t linger on the internet to come back and haunt you as you went on job interviews. Ten seconds after you saw a picture on your phone, it disappeared.
It’s a young person’s app, keep moving, and the faster the better. It also plays to the interactive, attention-getting aspects of youthful personality. Look at me. I’m interesting, cool. I’m having fun. One of the business challenges of social media apps is the constant need to further enhance user experience. So once the novelty of sending a disappearing selfie began to wear off, developers came up with ways to keep it interesting.
Accident Lawsuit in the Making
In 2013, the company added a feature that stamped pictures with time and date, or temperature — or speed. The thinking behind these “filters” is to add context to your picture. You send a picture saying you’re working late and add an image of a clock showing the wee hours. Or you send a photo shoveling snow and displaying the subzero temps. Engineers added the filter that shows how fast you are going when you send a selfie probably because they could. It doesn’t look like much thought went into the ramifications of the speed filter. They weren’t thinking about car accidents or personal injury and product liability lawsuits. When it was introduced in 2013 a TechCrunch writer put it this way:
Bizarrely, the update also adds 3 ‘smart filters’ which overlay the time your image was taken, the temperature when it was taken and — get this — how fast you were going when you shot it, in MPH. I foresee a whole new sport being made of snaps being sent at the highest possible speeds.
Kind of quaint and cavalier, given that the app has turned out to be an attractive nuisance from a personal injury lawyer’s perspective. Accidents waiting to happen. There actually is a new sport of snaps being sent at the highest possible speeds. Of course there is. The app is for teens. Teens like going fast. And teens aren’t very good drivers to begin with. They are prone to accidents.
Accident Lawsuit Lawyers: Product Liability
A Snapchat Speed Filter accident lawsuit is unfolding that illustrates the problem. The case involves a Georgia teen who caused an accident because she “wanted to post an image of herself going fast. She was, ‘Just trying to get the car to 100 miles per hour to post it on Snapchat.'” That according to personal injury lawyers for the driver of the car the teen hit while she was trying for her personal best. That car accident left the other driver with a traumatic brain injury.
The accident victim had to spend five weeks in intensive care treatment for his severe traumatic brain injury treatments. He can no longer work. His lawsuit seeks to recover medical bills and lost wages. The accident victim’s personal injury attorney said that the lawsuit is a product liability case “because Snapchat put something very dangerous in the marketplace without any warnings or safeguards, and basically said, whatever happens, happens.”
If an accident or injury happens to you, you’ll need a good personal injury attorney. Consider the Orlando car accident attorneys at Martinez Manglardi. We’ve been helping Central Florida personal injury victims recover losses for more than 30 years. Call 407-846-2240 for a free consultation.