TV Turns Status Messages Into Art

You know the viral “Noah takes a photo of himself every day for 6 years“? Well, what if Noah took a 4-second video of himself instead? And what if everyone else did, too? That’s kind of the effect you get from the new TV service, a derivation of a product from Particle, a San Francisco-based web product shop.’s main function is simple — a place to post clips that are sort of a webcam status message, with no sound and a time limit of 4 seconds. You can use the GIF-like autoplaying video creates for you as a sort of avatar that displays your most recent mood or location — or that’s the idea anyway, as compared with Seesmic (which doesn’t really do video anymore) or 12seconds, which use video clips more conversationally.
The new TV mode stitches updates together, either as a selection of members or sorted by metadata. (Check out the #everyone example video embedded above.) I’m not really sure if TV is an art project or a product, and Particle co-founder and CTO Aubrey Anderson said that’s yet to be determined by seeing how people use it. So far, itself is proving to be rather popular — in part because investor Justin Timberlake is already a built-in celebrity spokesman. Particle CEO Rey Flemings said has had 20,000 active users, 100,000 videos, and 375,000 visitors in the last month, and it only launched in May.