Instagram stories gaining on Snapchat

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Maddi Dayton
BYU students Abby Crandall, left, and Katie Cole look at both Snapchat and Instagram stories, but prefer using Snapchat stories. (Maddi Dayton)

Snapchat was the first social media platform to incorporate stories, and is the app some students still prefer. However, others said it’s just a matter of time until Instagram Stories become the dominant platform.

Instagram, the photo-sharing social media platform, released its “Stories” feature last fall and has become a strong competitor for Snapchat. Both Instagram Stories and Snapchat feature short video clips and photos that can be added to a person’s profile and disappear after 24 hours. Both platforms also feature photo filters, and Instagram Stories allows users to link to webpages or videos by “swiping up.”

BYU currently takes advantage of both of the popular platforms with the BYU Snapchat Story and the BYU Instagram Stories, featuring a “day in the life” of a BYU student. BYU dietetics student Katie Cole said she likes to view both her Snapchat and Instagram Stories, but only actively posts on one of them herself.

“I use both, but for my own stories I use more Snapchat,” Cole said. “On Snapchat, I know everyone who is my friend, whereas on Instagram there’s kind of some random people on there … My Snapchat story is a little more private, I guess.”

Knowing exactly who is able to see what you’re sharing is one of the benefits of Snapchat, according to BYU exercise science student Abby Crandall. She said she likes Instagram Stories, but is hesitant to post on a more public platform.

“I can choose who I’m sending things to,” Crandall said. “I don’t have a ton of friends on Snapchat, but I can still send things to certain friends or family depending on what it is, and I know Instagram Stories are a lot more public.”

The publicity and combination of stories and photo sharing can make Instagram the more appealing social media platform for some students since the release of the Stories feature. BYU pre-med student Cole Farnsworth said he finds Snapchat useless and got rid of it about a year ago.

“I don’t use Snapchat. I don’t have one, but I do use Instagram Stories,” Farnsworth said. “I feel like it’s easier to have more friends on Instagram, so it’s good if you really want to get something out, and a lot of people really do look at it. Out of the 1,000 or so followers I have, I think 400 look at it, so it’s pretty simple and easy to get something out really quickly.”

Farnsworth said it would be a “waste of time” to have a Snapchat account if he had an Instagram as well. He said the “live” feature on Instagram Stories makes it the most relevant and useful social media platform.

Cole said there are some cool features making both platforms useful and unique, like the Boomerang feature on Instagram Stories and the combined stories from many people you can find on Instagram.

Farnsworth said Instagram Stories was a great move by the company, despite some people’s skepticism.

“Now with the Live things they’re doing, you don’t really need Facebook anymore,” Farnsworth said. “You don’t really need Snapchat anymore, and I think that Instagram’s really going to be taking over.”