YouTube Stories will soon be a thing of the past. The feature is going away in a month. The company has announced that you will no longer be able to post Stories starting on June 26th. Stories shared before that will expire seven days after they were originally posted. The Google-owned video site encourages creators to use Community posts to share quick updates with their viewers.
You might be already familiar with the Stories feature on social media apps. Snapchat introduced this content format where anything you share automatically disappears after a fixed time, which is usually 24 hours. Facebook, Instagram, Skype, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, and many other platforms copied this format from Snapchat, some giving it a unique name of their own (Twitter called it Fleets).
However, not all of them had as much success with Stories as Snapchat or Facebook. Twitter discontinued Fleets less than a year after launch, while LinkedIn waved goodbye to its version of the feature after a year too. Turns out this format isn’t popular on YouTube either. “Amongst creators who use both posts and Stories, posts on average drive many times more comments and likes compared to Stories,” the company said in its announcement.
YouTube added that Community posts are now available to millions of creators. The company has brought some popular aspects of Stories to Community posts to make the feature more appealing. You now get rich editing tools and the ability to make posts expire automatically after 24 hours. Creators can also use new engagement features such as polls and quizzes to strengthen connections or start conversations with their audiences.
YouTube gave Stories its own spin but that didn’t work
YouTube launched Stories in late 2017. The feature was initially called Reels but the company later renamed it to Stories. Following a limited availability for about a year, Stories were expanded to all creators with 10,000 subscribers in late 2018. YouTube gave the feature a unique spin to make it look different. Most notably, those temporary posts live on for a whole week before disappearing, which is a lot longer than the 24-hour time limit on other platforms.
But as YouTube added more ways for creators to engage with their audiences apart from long-form videos, Stories started to take the back seat. The arrival of Shorts, a TikTok-style feed of short videos, in 2020 (out of beta in 2021) may have particularly spelled its demise. The feature lived on for two more years but never caught on with creators. And as of June 26, 2023, YouTube Stories will be a thing of the past.