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Hands-on with Beme: The video app that takes the filter off social media

Would you say that your presence on social media is an accurate representation of you as a person? Beme is a new app designed for social media, unfiltered.

For most people, the answer is probably a resounding ‘no’ to that first question. With apps like Instagram and Snapchat designed to tweak, edit, filter and refine brief instances from your life, to an outside viewer it’s very easy to paint a picture far withdrawn from the actuality of the content’s creator.

Casey Neistat is a self-taught, self-made filmmaker who’s amassed a huge following online most recently through a daily vlog, but also for his past work with provocatively titled films such as, ‘Apple’s Dirty Little Secret’ and ‘$13,238.86 left in a NYC taxi’. He once sold a documentary series about his brother and himself to H.B.O. for $2 million, he’s lectured at M.I.T. and as of the past week, he can add ‘launching a new social media app’ to his résumé.

Beme (pronounced ‘beam’ as in ‘a beam of light’) is that app and it’s been designed by Neistat and his team as a way to remove the filter we so readily impose upon ourselves when using more traditional methods of social media.

Unlike Snapchat, which offers the closest comparison, Beme requires that the user doesn’t look at the screen when they’re recording. To initiate a recording the user needs to cover the phone’s proximity sensor – obscuring the screen intentionally in the process. As Neistat’s Beme launch video points out, he doesn’t want users to have to enjoy that concert through a phone screen, but rather wishes they were present, watching it directly with their own eyes.

Right now Beme is in what is essentially an open beta phase, with new users being added each day on an invite-only basis. The experience has already changed both cosmetically and technically since the first users joined, but Neistat asks that those curious, if they can resist the temptation, don’t download Beme until the start of next week, by which time significant changes to the app will have been put in place.

In its current form you record four-second video clips blindly which are then immediately uploaded. Followers can then watch back your experiences and by tapping the screen capture their reaction which you can review when you next check the app.

Its present incarnation is simple and restrictive when compared to other apps along the same vein, but that’s partly what gives the app its charm, simplicity and undoubtedly one of the main intentions of its creators.

Beme is currently iOS only with an Android version expected to arrive later this year. The invite-only access will soon be removed and Neistat promises big changes are coming too. For those looking for a new, less intrusive way to share moments with the world, Beme might be the app for you. Pick it up from the App Store in the source link and for one of you, below is an invite code to get started.

Single use: