Three years ago when Instagram launched the Stories feature for the photo-sharing app, the company was criticized for copying the feature from rival Snapchat. Now, at the South by Southwest (SXSW) festival, Instagram co-founders Mike Krieger and Kevin Systrom spoke on a keynote panel about what led them to add “Stories” feature on the platform in 2016.
Now, in a conversation with TechCrunch editor-at-large Josh Constine, the co-founders discussed about their desire to “increase authenticity” and capture moments of life. However, Systrom was being blunt about adding Snapchat inspired Stories feature on the platform. “For a long time, people’s profiles were filled with Snapchat links. It was clear people were trying to bridge the two products. So we gave them what they wanted,” Systrom said.
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Users, who were also present on Snapchat, started posting links to their Snapchat stories on the platform. Introducing the feature on Instagram helped the company prevent users from sharing those links that redirected users to Snapchat. The feature went ahead to become a success, causing Snapchat to decline, and now, “Stories” are popular on Instagram, Facebook as well as on WhatsApp.
They also talked about the time when they were acquired by Facebook in 2012. The co-founders added saying that the acquisition helped Instagram expand faster. “I think [Instagram’s size] is a strong argument that the acquisition helped users,” Systrom added. In September last year, both co-founders resigned from the firm. Systrom concluded by saying, “I think for Instagram to get to the stage that it did is an incredible thing for the world and an incredible thing for users.”