Hey you guys... I have officially gone to the dark side.
No no, I've not donned a black helmet, started heavy breathing or started incinerating people with a light saber... no where I've gone is weirder than that...
I have gone and got myself addicted to Snapchat.
To be honest, I actually signed up some time earlier last year, but I never made it to the point where I actually figured out how it all works, let alone posted anything.
To be honest, I thought it would kind of just 'go away' like so many of the faddish social media platforms tend to do.
It seems I was wrong though, because over 200 million people are now signed up to Snapchat and at least 100 million of them are active on it which means they aren't just keeping the icon on their phone for appearances sake so that their kids think they are kind of cool... (yes Guilty! Whatever)
Nope, those 100 million active users are not just horny teenage kids sending pics to their school yard crushes, there are celebs, musicians, politicians, bloggers as well as us complete novices all on there and collectively we are uploading over 400 million Snapchat stories a day.
It would take you 10 years to view all the photos those 100 millions + users share on Snapchat in the last hour alone*.
Bloody hell that's like nirvana for a chronic voyeur or something right?
OK... I confess, I fell victim to a dose of social FOMO when I realised that so many people I know are all hanging over on Snapchat having big old Snapchat love fests and I was missing out.
I must also confess to loving myself a little sticky beak into people's lives too so it was a given that I would eventually fall to temptation and like so many before me - resort to asking / bribing / paying my 14 year old kid to teach me how to use it.
Now please don't judge me or make fun of me... clearly my teenager has already been there and done that when he posted this Snapchat of me attempting to learn the ropes.
I mean what's not to love about face swapping with other people and using ridiculous filters to take drunk photos of yourself to send to your friends, filters that turn you into something that would completely freak your kids out or at the very least simply entertain you and them for a mindless few hours?
OK, apart from the selfie manipulation, I'm going to give it five of my best shots to convince you to get on Snapchat... if you aren't already.
1. I know I said "aside from the selfie manipulation" but I have to tell you - those funny filter thingies are quite possibly the best baby sitters you could ever hope for. Dead set, if you are out to dinner and the kids are getting bored, just give them Snapchat to play with and I pretty much promise that you won't hear from them until well after you have hogged the last fortune cookie.
2. Follow your fave celebs and take a peek into their private live. Marvel at their gorgeous homes, find solice in the video and photos of their messy lounge rooms and snigger at their make up free faces and the stupid things they do after one too many tequila shots. It's priceless I tell you and totally fair game - I mean they signed up and decide what to share with us right?!
3. If there is a brand or brands you love - follow them and get to know the creators behind the products. See what inspires them and maybe even get a sneak peek of what they are working on as they take you behind the scenes of their design process and campaign location shoots etc.
4. If you are a blogger, well then Snapchat is an awesome way to continue to over share with your readers. I'm not even kidding - it's kind of like a vlog (video blog) and you can actually talk and show your readers things you love or things you are doing yada yada via short little unedited videos you upload.
5. If you make a total ass of yourself and post something when you are completely toasted, then you only have 24 hours before it disappears off your story feed and you can forget it ever happened... unless your kids screen shot it...which you should know is highly possible.
If you don't have a teenager you can con into showing you the ropes, here's a handy little Snapchat tutorial from Snapchat for Dummies to get you started.
If you too decide to come over to the dark side - look me up under LifeLoveHiccups. Or if you are already on there, leave me your profile in the comments below so I can check in on what you're up to.
Are you on Snapchat or are you avoiding it at all costs?
*Snapchat facts from http://www.omnicoreagency.com/snapchat-statistics/