Instagram Stories Rips Off Snapchat

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Everyone has a story, and Instagram wants to help tell yours.

Instagram Stories lets users share "all the moments of your day, not just ones you want to keep on your profile." As you post multiple images and videos, content is automatically assembled into a slideshow, which disappears after 24 hours and does not appear on your profile grid or in your photo feed.

"You don't have to worry about over-posting," the company said in a blog post. "You can share as much as you want throughout the day—with as much creativity as you want."

Sound familiar? Nearly three years ago, Snapchat launched Stories, which lets users share snaps with multiple people at once. Users can add text and drawings to the photo canvases, which live for 24 hours before disappearing.

Instagram's ripoff version is rolling out globally on iOS and Android over the next few weeks.

Keep an eye on the top of your feed, where new stories from people you follow will appear as a colorful ring around their profile picture. Tap to view slideshows at your own pace: press once to move forward or backward, or swipe to jump to another person's story.

Unlike regular posts, there is no option to like photos or leave comments on videos; instead, you can boost someone's ego by sending a private message via Instagram Direct.

Stories always follow the privacy settings of your account—private or public; users can hide an entire story from a specific person (or people), ensuring your parents don't see those risque clips of you and your summer fling. Swipe up to check out who's in each slide, and feature a particular part of your story by posting it to your profile.

"Instagram has always been a place to share the moments you want to remember," the blog said. "Now you can share your highlights and everything in between, too."

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