Facebook tries to beat Snapchat at its own game with Stories for all, new camera effects and more

We’ve officially lost count of all the ways in which Facebook has been trying to emulate Snapchat’s looks and iconic functionality lately across the social media giant’s vast library of online interaction services, with the newest such move putting Stories front and center in the main Facebook app for its roughly 1.9 billion monthly active users to have (time-limited) fun with.

You all know the feature. It lets you share multiple photos and videos as part of a “visual collection” for 24 hours atop the traditional News Feed, disappearing after a day so you can start again fresh the next. The Instagram community apparently took an instant liking to Stories, so now all you need to do to join the cool kids’ party is open Facebook, tap on the “Your Story” icon above the News Feed, and show your friends what you’re up to.

Want a little creativity boost? No Snapchat clone would be complete without filters and camera effects, and boy, does Facebook offer plenty of those on iOS and Android beginning this week. You’ve got masks, frames and loads of “interactive” filters you can apply to your snapshots and video recordings, as well as “reactive” and “style” effects. And let’s not forget sponsored masks including Alien: Covenant, Despicable Me 3, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Power Rangers, Smurfs: The Lost Village and Wonder Woman characters and artwork, because there’s no such thing as too many revenue streams.

Finally, the Direct option is “designed for sharing individual photos and videos with specific friends for a limited time”, rolling out to your Facebook accounts alongside the two aforementioned updates gradually over the next few days.

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About The Author
Adrian Diaconescu
Adrian has had an insatiable passion for writing since he was in school and found himself writing philosophical essays about the meaning of life and the differences between light and dark beer. Later, he realized this was pretty much his only marketable skill, so he first created a personal blog (in Romanian) and then discovered his true calling, which is writing about all things tech (in English).