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What are Snapchat Stories?

As many college students can relate, whenever I wake up, I perform my daily ritual of checking texts, emails, Facebook notifications, and Snapchats. Last week, however, when I opened Snapchat to see the morning round of  Snaps, I was surprised to see yet another change in the application. This time, it was more than just a change of the notification button from a circle to a square.

At the very top of my Snapchat list was a video from “Team Snapchat.”

Anyway, this video was different than the ones I had received before. It lasted longer and had a mixture of video and pictures, all rolled into one Snap. What was this weird new version of Snapchat? And that’s when I discovered Snapchat Stories.

Snapchat Stories, the app’s newest update, allows users the option to string together pictures and videos taken throughout the day. Similar to other social media sites (particularly Facebook’s timeline), this “slideshow” is public for all Snapchat friends. But, unlike its rivals, Snapchat’s picture/video chain feature only lasts for 24 hours–thus maintaining Snapchat’s vision of sharing media temporarily.

Screenshot of Snapchat stories
Screenshot of Snapchat stories

How to create your own Snapchat Stories

When you take a picture or video, you now have the option of sending it to specific friends, just like before – or adding the picture/video to “My Story” – by pressing the third button to the right (double rectangle with a star).

By choosing “My Story,” you have allowed yourself the ability to view that picture/video as many times as you want up to 24 hours. You have also allowed all Snapchat users in your friends list to view the picture/video, but they can only view it once (again just like before).

You can add to your story by taking more pictures and videos and continuing to choose the “My Story” button. The pictures/videos are stored sequentially. Each individual “link” in the chain disappears after its specific 24-hour time limit is up, making room for new pictures/videos.

Your Story never ends and it’s always changing,” Snapchat said in a blog introducing the new feature. “The end of your Story today is the beginning of your Story tomorrow.”

Because Snapchat wanted all users to get acquainted with the update at the same time, it released Snapchat Stories simultaneously on iOS and Android.

Have you tried Snapchat Stories yet? Let me know how you like it!

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Jackie Grossman

Jackie is a junior Information Management & Technology and Television/Radio/Film dual major at Syracuse University. Beyond the classroom, she enjoys discovering new TV shows/movies, playing softball, and hanging out with friends. Feel free to connect with her on Twitter @JackieG_12

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