Ephemeral messaging startup Snapchat wants to employ people who can create and share content related to the 2016 presidential election.
The company earlier this week published a job description under the title “Content Analyst – Politics & News.”
“We’re looking for political junkies and news aficionados to join our team in NYC to help review Snaps that are submitted to Our Story events, and cover the 2016 presidential race and other news events for Snapchat,” the company said in the posting. These people will work in shifts to provide round-the-clock coverage and should be “Willing to travel to exotic locales like Iowa, New Hampshire, Ohio and Florida,” according to the posting.
These people don’t have to be journalists per se. But candidates should be “advocates for free expression who aren’t easily offended” and who are able to “remain objective and neutral while evaluating potentially controversial content,” the posting states.
The expansion around political content follows a couple of prominent hires in the political domain — CNN reporter Peter Hamby just became the startup’s head of news, and Google political ad sales head Rob Saliterman is now doing that job at Snapchat.
And some politicians themselves are already interested in Snapchat. Martin O’Malley, formerly the governor of Maryland, used it to communicate with people about a possible Democratic presidential campaign.
Political “editorial” content from different locations around the U.S. could be a point of entry for advertisements — from political candidates or from companies. And that’s important as Snapchat continues to grow its business on top of a valuation reported to be as high as $19 billion.
Venice, California-based Snapchat has been moving swiftly into content in the past year, having launched the Discover feature to disseminate in-house video alongside media from National Geographic, Vice, Food Network, and other organizations.
The political efforts at Snapchat are reminiscent of MTV’s Rock the Vote campaign, which for years has used music to catch the attention of young people and get them involved in politics. If the strategy works out, it could make Snapchat — whose apps are popular with younger people — a key tool for reaching people for political causes in a way that Facebook and Twitter haven’t been.
Snapchat declined to comment.