Shifting Its Focus, Google Is Shutting Down Its Snapchat Clone 'YouTube Stories'

YouTube Story

The 24-hour ephemeral content was a thing people sought after. Now, it still is, but for Google, that's not its thing anymore.

The "story" feature of social media is a format first popularized by Snapchat, before Meta's properties and others copied the feature, and made it even more popular the Snapchat's original interpretation. From there, everyone began doing it.

And by everyone, it's really just about everyone.

Almost all social media platforms out there have, or used to have, some sort of temporary post feature similar, if not identical, to Snapchat's stories.

And YouTube, the streaming titan from Google, was one of the first to hop on this bandwagon. This time, it's hopping off.

Read: Facebook, Instagram Vs. Snapchat: Copying To Eliminate The Threats

YouTube Stories is a way for users to create a video that will last on the platform for seven days.

With Google shutting down the feature on June 26, from that date, Stories should be visible for the usual seven-day period they're available for, after which they will disappear, putting an end to YouTube's run with the feature.

In other words, all traces of YouTube Stories will be gone on July 3.

YouTube Stories that became a thing in 2018, was called Reels.

Unlike the implementations in other apps, where all content posted using the format would last 24 hours before deleting itself, YouTube Stories were available to see for a whole week. They were mostly used as a means for content creators to promote content they released or were about to release, and they were surprisingly effective for this purpose given their longevity.

YouTube wants content creators who used these ephemeral feature to post other kinds of non-video content.

The thing is, gone are those days.

While the demand for ephemeral format continues, TikTok is the new Snapchat, and because of that, YouTube is ditching Stories to focus on what's more important.

Read: YouTube Introduces 'YouTube Shorts', Its Blatant Answer To TikTok

YouTube Story

YouTube explained that the reason its dropping YouTube Stories was so that it could focus on its other, more popular recent features.

The company specifically focused on its shortform video feature, YouTube Shorts, as well as Community posts.

"Today, there are many ways to create on YouTube – from Community posts to Shorts, to long-form and Live," YouTube announced in a post in its community forum.

"To prioritize these key features, Stories are going away."

"While Stories are going away, we’ve seen that both Community posts and YouTube Shorts are great alternatives that can deliver valuable audience connections and conversations," the announcement continued.

YouTube Stories is popular, but if compared to rivals' stories feature, or compared to other of YouTube's features, Stories never really took off.

According to YouTube, creators who used both YouTube Shorts and YouTube Stories found that Shorts drove "many more" subscribers than Stories did.