YouTube is adding Snapchat-like stories for creators

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Youtube’s Incognito mode
Some big changes are coming to YouTube.
Photo: freestocks.org/Pexels CC

Stories, the short-video format popularized by Snapchat, is making its way to YouTube.

Everyone from Instagram to Facebook Messenger has already copied Snapchat’s popular, so it should be little surprise that YouTube has decided to get in on the action too. The video platform revealed to creators today that it’s working on a new feature called “Reels” that is a lot like Stores. Only it comes with some major differences.

YouTube told creators on its blog today that Reels will soon be rolled out in beta to a handful of video makers for testing and feedback. The company says it sees the Reels format as a way to connect more directly with fans by creating content without uploading an entire video.

A new spin on Stories

Video creators will have the ability to make multiple reels using video clips and other content. Unlike stories on Instagram and Snapchat, the Reels won’t expire unless you want it to.

You can also link to your YouTube videos in Reels and add pre-made stickers. Here’s what Reels will look like at launch:

Youtube
Reels is YouTube’s take on the “stories” format.
Photo: YouTube

Reels will be posted on a separate tab in creators’ channels. If engagement is high, YouTube told TechCrunch it could trigger the company to add Reel recommendations on a viewer’s YouTube home page. YouTube also revealed that it’s opening up its Community network to all content creators with 10,000 subscribers or more. This should allow smaller creators to access more fans and increase engagement.