Photo editor VSCO gives users a chat option for creative conversations

Hillary Grigonis

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VSCO is an app that falls under both photo editing and social media and the platform is expanding the community aspect by launching a new option for private messaging. On Wednesday, December 6, VSCO announced Messages, a chat option inside the app’s creative community.

Like other private messaging platforms, Messages on VSCO allows users to send a message to just one person (or a group of people) rather than publicly sharing within the photo community. While chat makes sense for social-focused apps, VSCO has designed the tool around their photo community specifically.

Using the new messaging option, users can send other users a photo, a video, an entire profile or share journals, VSCO’s term for a blog post. While the app will soon be gaining options to share those types of content in the chat directly from the image or profile itself, users can also chat in the more traditional sense by sending text-based messages, such as asking where a photo was shot or how an image was edited. No matter how the message was shared, whether through a forward of a photo or text, all the messages will appear inside the conversation thread in the new direct message platform.

To start a chat, users navigate to a profile and tap the “message” option below the username. While browsing content from photos and videos to journals, VSCO users can forward the item to another user by tapping the triangular paper airplane icon.

VSCO users can only send messages to users that follow them, while users also have the option to block or report messages they didn’t want to receive.

“One of our most requested features, Messages is a new way to connect, share inspiration, and learn from other creators in the VSCO community,” the announcement reads. “Exchange editing tips and tricks, share compelling profiles and published content and receive creative feedback from peers.”

The chat option will be built into VSCO’s main app. The announcement comes just as Instagram began testing a Facebook Messenger-like split to place Direct messages in a separate app.

The new feature will roll out to VSCO X users first, part of the app’s paid subscription for unlocking the most features and accessing all of the presets. The tool will then roll out to all users over the next few weeks.