LinkedIn announced Tuesday that its ephemeral Stories product will be discontinued. According to Liz Li, senior director of product, the company plans to “remove the current Stories experience by the end of September.” Internal testing for the Snapchat-style video Stories began in February 2020.
Part of the reason for the shutdown is that LinkedIn discovered users didn’t want their videos to vanish. “We assumed that people wouldn’t want informal videos attached to their profile when we developed Stories, and that ephemerality would reduce the barriers that people feel about posting,” Li said. “It turns out that you want to make long-lasting videos that tell your professional story in a more personal way, showcasing both your personality and your expertise.”
LinkedIn’s move follows Twitter’s shutdown of Fleets
LinkedIn’s move comes after Twitter’s Fleets, a Stories-like product, was shut down in July. Twitter, like LinkedIn, noticed that users didn’t react to ephemeral videos in the way it had hoped. “We hoped Fleets would help more people feel comfortable joining the conversation on Twitter,” Ilya Brown, Twitter’s vice president of product, said on Twitter’s blog. “But, in the time since we introduced Fleets to everyone, we haven’t seen an increase in the number of new people joining the conversation with Fleets as we hoped.”
The two shutdowns could signal a broader social media company retreat from ephemeral video products. Snapchat and Instagram, on the other hand, do not appear to be planning to abandon their Stories products anytime soon.
Now all we have to do is wait to see which social media companies abandon their Clubhouse knockoffs. LinkedIn is working on one of those, in case you were wondering.