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Enlarge / Writer Sam Machkovech gears up for tonight’s fireworks.
Want to make Snapchat great again? Donald Trump has given American users of the social media app that chance thanks to the service’s first-ever nationwide “geofilter” ad campaign for a politician.
The ad rolled out to American Snapchat users today, just ahead of the 2016 presidential election’s first major debate between Trump and Hillary Clinton (the debate starts tonight at 9pm EDT).
The ad joins the usual geofilter available to Snapchat users, which usually list the name of a city or a nearby event as determined by GPS and time information.
As shown to the right (featuring me as its puzzled selfie star), the ad stamps a user’s photo and video Snaps with a banner phrase reading “Donald J.
Crooked Hillary,” along with Trump’s famed slogan and a note confirming that the candidate paid for the geofilter campaign.
This campaign differs from the deluge of text, photo, and video ads that politicians have relied on in recent years, as it doesn’t publish or display to the public without a personal photo or video attached. While other political campaigns have paid for geofilter ad campaigns on Snapchat in the past, including Clinton and Bernie Sanders, those have been timed and targeted for smaller-scale events like political conventions and primary voting periods.
In a statement to CNN, the Clinton campaign said that Trump was “throwing his money into a fire pit,” and it pointed out the ad’s potential for backfiring, since “given Trump’s deep unpopularity with young voters, [the ad’s phrasing] will be used mainly at [his] own expense.”
Listing image by Sam Machkovech