TikTok is testing a Snapchat-style vanishing stories feature

Ben Givon
3 min readAug 9, 2021


Everyone is stealing feature ideas from TikTok. But the social media giant plays a trick on them all by copying Snapchat. Just kidding — it’s pretty standard that a social media company decides to add a story feature. TikTok finally arrived at this point, and the world is now graced with TikTok stories feature.

One of the first people to report on the novel addition was Matt Navarra on Twitter. A TikTok confirmation arrived soon after, as The Verge posed the question to the famous company.

Here’s the gist — apparently, some of the TikTok-based influencers got access to this trial TikTok stories feature. The principal is similar to Snapchat, Facebook, and Instagram — the clips vanish after 24 hours. Fun fact, it’s arriving around the same time as the messaging app WhatsApp rolls out a similar option for users. The chat app now allows you to post photos and videos that vanish after being seen.

The Stories feature is a function that lets users imitate those feelings of elusiveness and fleetness. That is something that is widely missed on the internet. Even though those feelings are pretty much fake.

Keeping Up With The World

TikTok explained its decision for the new TikTok stories feature. They’ve said that they are always looking for new ways to bring more value to the community and make being on TikTok a richer experience.

At the moment, they are experimenting with new ways to give influential creators additional methods to express themselves to the TikTok community. What sets TikTok’s feature apart from other platforms’ approaches is that it seems that you will be only able to post videos, not pictures.

How does it work? Simple. You click on the ‘create’ button on the sidebar, and then you can add the usual additions — text, music, captions, etc.

We still don’t have a lot of information on the scope of the testing or when it will get a wider release. However, some users on Twitter are, for now, making unverifiable claims that certain TikTok users have had success with the vanishing videos options.

That seems like a natural step in the evolution of a social media application. Since Snapchat introduced Stories in 2013 (8 years ago!), others have followed, mainly successfully. LinkedIn, Netflix, YouTube, and Xbox are some surprising apps that have taken a similar approach.

When done well, vanishing stories bring up engagement, offer users new places to place ads. Overall, they keep the gears of the social media platform in question greased.

We have already written about TikTok being one of the most lucrative and popular apps of 2021, so who can blame the ByteDance-owned app for progressing the way it does?

WhatsApp Jumping On Board, As Well

The Facebook-owned application WhatsApp also introduced a function that lets you post photos and videos that disappear after being viewed.

It’s called the “view once” feature, and it resembles Instagram’s option where the image disappears after being opened and viewed. WhatsApp’s goal was to give users more control over privacy. But some child protection advocates highlight that messages that disappear automatically can aid in cover-ups of child sexual abuse.

Twitter Discontinues Fleets

The formula doesn’t necessarily go “Social Media Giant + Stories Feature = Success.”

Twitter abandoned its Fleets feature on 3 August since it didn’t take off as expected.

Fleets also let users post videos and photos that went away after 24 hours. Even though you could add stickers, GIFs, and other fun additions to the stories, it didn’t catch on.

Twitter didn’t find success with its Stories feature Fleets


Stories are one of the most consistently popular features on different social media platforms. So no matter which pops up next to take TikTok’s crown (hey, we don’t make the rules, it’s just apparent that nothing is forever), we will probably also see that company introduce Stories at some point or another to spike up that engagement rate.

Whatever happens, we can safely say that this latest development with TikTok (and WhatsApp) is proof that the internet has a cyclic way of work, resembling a snake eating its tail. After all, how can one be entirely original on such an oversaturated market? Sure, you can add some novelties here and there, but some things are just true, tested, and ever-so desirable.



Ben Givon

Ben Givon is the key writer and blogger for various internet sites. A recognised expert in the fields of online marketing and branding.