When Vivien, a 44-year-old make-up artist from Florida, saw British pop star Jess Glynne, in a strapless white gown and trainers at the 2019 BRIT awards, she was struck how the performance featured the singer removing makeup on stage. So she posted the YouTube clip to WeGather, a social app where she has 35 followers (where she goes by vivien.yates), to see what they had to say about it. “Hasn’t Alicia Keys been performing without make up for a few years?” wondered Julia, an aspiring model from Melbourne, Australia, adding, “maybe some women LIKE wearing make up?” Eva, a 22-year-old American student, had a few thoughts of her own. “I think what she did was great and inspiring, but personally I think it would’ve made more of an impact if she didn’t wear any makeup in the first place,” she wrote. “Correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t she photographed on the red carpet in makeup before she performed and those are the pictures that are going to appear in magazines.”
WeGather is trying to help people like Vivien make money for sharing interesting content and generating engaging feedback. It’s easy enough to chime in with your two cents. And a tip button next to Vivien’s photo makes it easy to do just that, literally. The app has a 4.8 rating on Apple’s App Store, and wants to help influencers – what it refers to as "discussion leaders" – monetize their fan base. We suppose this means not having to deal with some pesky middle-man click-bait farm that collects pennies and pays out when they feel like it, or risking demonetization due to overreaching content removal requests.
The app is firmly setting its sights on providing an alternative to the more popular platforms where these discussion leaders currently like to hang out. You can also get paid for “time-limited group discussions” or polls. And there are subscription communities, private chats and consultations, all structured to allow participants to score coin for their contributions. It’s a long-overdue idea, one that Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram and Twitter likely hope doesn’t gain traction – actually paying creators for the micro-content that fuels the social web.
The team behind the WeGather suggest experts will be able to earn “significantly more” than they would from the revenue split Instagram and YouTube have been willing to offer up. For instance, an Instagram account with 25,000 followers that features two sponsored posts a week might bring in $1,500 by the end of the month. But that same account could likely expect a similar sized audience to produce around $5,000. That's if only 3% of the audience is willing to kick in an average of $7 a month. For our money, any innovation in the world of digital content funding is like rain on Tanzania’s parched Serengeti, and considering we have million dollar ideas everyday, we're down to play with WeGather!