Is Venmo the New Instagram?

Phillip Chin

In recent years, Venmo has exploded onto the scene as a ubiquitous utility among Millennials and Gen Z. No longer content with juggling different bills at a dinner among friends, people are splitting the check with Venmo. The platform is minimalistic and built around its simple purpose. However, Venmo has become something more than a payment platform.

Paypal, Venmo’s parent company, has seen steady growth over the past five years. Currently, the default setting for all transactions is public and many young users prefer to keep it that way. That’s because Venmo has become an under-ground social media where hangouts and inside jokes can be shared quickly. In 2017, there were 207 million public transactions, where anybody could see the amount, message, sender, and recipient. However, users may not realize that more than just their immediate Venmo friends can see any of their data, every Venmo user can.