Dustin Curtis makes a compelling case for Snapchat:

Since using that early prototype of Treehouse, I’ve been wanting something that replicated the feeling of using photos for communication, and nothing has come close. It seems that every photo sharing app ends up adding features like commenting, which destroys the fundamental value of the photos themselves; all photo sharing apps have regressed into apps for artistic expression.

Until Snapchat, which has captured the essence of using photos as communication. Because it is completely ephemeral – and because the photos are deleted after 1-10 seconds – it’s impossible to use the photos for anything but communication. It’s an amazing app, and its popularity is just a hint of how I think we’ll use photos in the future.

As a fellow early user/fan of Treehouse, I find this parallel fascinating. It could be one of those unfortunate situations where Treehouse was simply too early for its own good.

I actually believe that a large part of Instagram’s success has been that it turned photography into a universal “language”. But I think there’s something to the idea that Instagram is more of a language spoken through a megaphone rather than a back-and-forth communication. Snapchat/Poke and the rest are getting us there.