Friday 26 May 2017

Facebook finally adds Stories - and these are the changes to your news feed

Andrew Griffin

Facebook is finally adding Stories to its news feed, completing its project to adopt Snapchat's most famous picture.

The company had already added the feature to the rest of its other apps, including Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger.

But the addition to the Facebook news feed is the biggest of all of those changes, shaking up the way that the app works entirely.

At the top of the news feed, instead of the posts or the status update box, users will now see a series of circles with their friends faces in them.

It will work the exact same as Instagram stories, which was added to the app last summer, and has gone on to become as big as Snapchat itself and taken many of the smaller app's most popular users.

Stories represent a fundamental change away from the idea of the news feed, where people scroll down and see new posts, and into a carousel of pictures and videos that people cycle through.

It has already substantially changed the way that people post on Instagram, for instance, and Facebook will hope that it can serve as a way of undoing the phenomenon of "context collapse", where people don't share information about themselves enough.

But it also finishes off Facebook's pattern of mimicking the feature from Snapchat. After introducing what was once its rival's most defining feature and adding it to all its smaller apps, it will now be available in the main one.

Like Snapchat (and all of Facebook's other offerings), anything posted to the story will only last for 24 hours. It will allow people to post photos and videos that then appear for all of a person's friends.

They're used in the same way, too: people can click on their own face to post something to their own story, or they can click on other people's faces to see what they have posted.

The feature had been in testing among users in Ireland earlier this year. But it now seems to be rolling out across the world, though not to everyone.

The feature only seems to appear in the mobile version of the app, and stories can only be posted there too.

Independent News Service

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