Snapchat features West Bank in social media ‘victory’

Social media app casts spotlight on West Bank after move to show Tel Aviv without mentioning Palestinians causes storm.

WestBankLife Snapchat
"Palestine is such a beautiful country and has such a beautiful culture and people," a user said [via Snapchat]

The social messaging tool Snapchat has cast a spotlight on the West Bank, days after it chose to feature stories from Israel without mentioning Palestinians.

The networking app unleashed a wave of criticism from Twitter users for not showing both sides of the story when on Tuesday it depicted Israelis enjoying themselves in Tel Aviv on what some Twitter users said was “Palestinian land”.

Following the backlash, the company, which allows users to take and send pictures or videos, called “snaps”, announced that it would follow up with a West Bank Life story on Thursday.

Social media users said they viewed the move as a victory.

“We did it! Palestine’s so beautiful,” tweeted one user.

“Palestine is such a beautiful country and has such a beautiful culture and people,” said another.

Another tweeted: “I’m so excited to show my parents the West Bank. They’re Palestinian but have never been there. Occupation runs deep.”

Others pointed out that settlements were illegal under international law and tweeted that Israeli soldiers were “mysteriously absent” from the story.

“I hope people see the West Bank Life story and question why there are checkpoints, why there are walls and what’s happening to Palestinians,” a Twitter user said.

Others in the Middle East later suggested a Mecca Live Snapchat story “to show the world what Islam really is”.

Source: Al Jazeera