How to use Facebook Stories

Last week, Facebook users around the world were greeted with a mysterious change. There, atop the usual news feed, was a row of circles. Inside each circle, a photo of one of their friends.


What in the world is happening, cried out millions of people over 30 who have never used Snapchat.

It's a new Facebook feature called Stories, and it's an imitation of a popular feature on rival app Snapchat (SNAP). Facebook previously added Stories to Instagram, but this latest roll out on its core iOS and Android apps reaches far more people. Many of whom are, understandably, confused.

We turned to some of CNNTech's resident millennials and Facebook (FB, Tech30) itself for tips on how to use Stories without embarrassing yourself.

What is a Story?

A Story is a collection of videos and photos from the past day. It is separate from the photos and videos you share in your newsfeed. You start with one item -- say, a shot of a good dog you met on the way to work -- then add more as the mood strikes you.

Since there are no captions, cartoon or text overlays are often added for context or laughs. All the clips added in the past day are shown as one continuous stream. Each segment automatically disappears after 24 hours.

How do I make one?

Tap the new camera button on the top left corner of the Facebook app. Use the magic wand icon to add graphics, text, drawings and interactive animations. Hold the big button down to shoot video, or tap it once for a photo. You can also import existing photos and videos. When you're done, hit the giant arrow, select "Your Story" from the list of contacts, and tap the send button.

What kind of pictures go into a Story?

Stories are designed for little things that happened during the day about which you normally wouldn't make a standalone post. CNNTech production assistant Lisa Fischer, 22, suggests picking things that are "interesting or funny in the moment but not long-term interesting enough to post as like, an Instagram."

Related: Facebook's transformation into Snapchat is almost complete

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