A Love Letter To Dispo
Life is made up of all of these wildly unsexy moments. The moments between the moments. When you’re waiting in the checkout line with your kids, stuck in traffic on the phone with your wife, grabbing a beer with a friend. These moments — that we often overlook — are oddly the ones that make life meaningful and memorable.
It’s human nature to chase down the opposite — the award stages, bougie vacations, big fundraising rounds, and over-the-top weddings — often at the cost of the former. Instagram’s tech pack leveraged this disparity at scale. On Instagram we live for the narrative instead of the experience, the content we can capture rather than the people we’re with.
Had it been designed for a different business model this may have played out different. Because the basic premise — that there’s value in capturing and sharing moments — is true.
Enter Dispo. The entire tech pack from Dispo, from how small the viewfinder is, to the one-and-only filter, to the delayed gratification, to the design of sharing rolls is designed to be the antithesis to Instagram.
It’s about capturing the meaningful moments, instead of the staged ones. It’s about sharing with close friends, not about creating influencers. It’s about living in the moment, and capturing it simultaneously. And best of all, it separates the capture, share, and curation components into three separate steps. There’s a pause factor, and a limit to how far you can go with curation.
As I’ve started using Dispo, I find myself noting those in-between moments more, and taking out my phone to capture them. There’s no staging. There’s no sharing. It’s just like — I’m grateful to be eating breakfast with these people. Snap. I can’t believe that bee is hanging on his leg. Snap. I’m happy to be looking at this tree. Snap. It forces a more thoughtful kind of presence, and capturing.
Based on what I’ve seen so far, I think Dispo has a chance to become the digital home for meaning and memories. Only time will tell if that’s true. The app is super buggy right now, and the tech could never arrive. Over a longer horizon, it could devolve into a socially competitive landscape. Or we could find, like with Beme, that people aren’t ready to consume unfiltered life yet. Or that monetization is rocky.
The designers and behaviorists at Dispo have a hard path ahead to stay on-mission. But I’ll be the first to say — I hope they figure out what no one else has yet.
Because when I’m laying on my death bed, looking back on my life, I’m confident it’ll look a lot more like a Dispo roll than an Instagram feed. I’ll see the little things, the in-betweens. The time spent around the kitchen table, driving to soccer practices, grinding late. You know, the regular stuff, not the highlight reel.