YouTube has announced that it will be shutting down its Stories feature on June 26, 2023, as the platform aims to concentrate on other key areas, such as Shorts, Community posts, live videos, and its traditional long-form content. The decision comes as the popularity of TikTok’s short-form vertical video format has overshadowed the more ephemeral and casual nature of Stories.
YouTube is not the only platform abandoning Stories. Netflix had previously tested a similar feature called “Extras” on its mobile app, but has since embraced vertical video with the introduction of features like “Fast Laughs” and a vertical video feature for kids. LinkedIn also abandoned its Stories feature in 2021, while Spotify introduced a similar feature for artists’ profiles but has prioritized TikTok-like discovery feeds in its redesign.
YouTube initially launched Stories in 2018 for creators with over 10,000 subscribers, but it never expanded access to all users, limiting its adoption. The feature allowed creators to share behind-the-scenes updates, vlogs, sneak peeks, and quick updates, with the content disappearing after seven days.
However, YouTube acknowledged that Stories didn’t gain much traction compared to other engagement tools like Community posts, which generated significantly more comments and likes. Creators have also shifted their focus to YouTube Shorts, which has proven to be more successful than Stories in terms of gaining subscribers.
A YouTube spokesperson stated that as Shorts adoption grew, they realized creators benefitted from the new format. The decision to discontinue Stories allows YouTube to prioritize areas that creators need to succeed and continue investing in formats that help creators connect with their audiences.
Creators who frequently use Stories will be notified of the shutdown through various channels, including notifications in YouTube Studio, Help Center content, and a Creator Insider video. After June 26, it will no longer be possible to create new Stories, but existing Stories will remain visible for seven days after their original sharing date.