As was expected, Instagram Stories has officially blown up. With all of its new features, it’s now just as popular as the original 10-second story maker, Snapchat. In fact, Adweek recently reported that “after months of relentlessly copying Snap Inc.’s features for its own version of vertical video, Instagram says it now has 200 million people using the Stories feature on a daily basis.” That’s 42 million more daily users than Snapchat is currently reported to have. With that said, there are some kinks in the stats; Instagram considers a user to be someone who posts a Story or simple clicks on a Story, whereas Snapchat requires a person to actually open the app in order for that user to be noted. For now, that’s neither here nor there. As Instagram continues to copy all of Snapchat’s features, it’s blatantly evident without any hard data that both apps are now neck-in-neck in the race to see which Story will win the popularity vote.
Still, there’s one thing that Snapchat Stories has over Instagram Stories (for now), an almost foreign concept that millennials seek out from time to time—privacy. As of this day, Snapchat Stories offers a degree of privacy that Instagram does not. But, my account is private, you say? Okay, so your Instagram account might be private, but out of your 250 “exclusive” followers you don’t have the option to pick and choose who out of those people get to see your story. Once a post goes live, it’s free game for all to view. Snapchat on the other hand still has a privacy aspect in terms of a user’s audience. As any Snapchat-er is aware, its settings allow you to accept who your friends/followers are, a feature that’s ideal for the majority of users. For you, for me, for anyone looking to hold on to an inkling of control over our personal privacy setting in the continuous cycle of every day exposure through social media. Just yesterday, it was reported that young women are still loyal to Snapchat, along with many of its core Gen Z following. Could it be the allure of privacy, even if it’s only a slither of a helping? I don’t know about you, but we yearn for the days when it was taboo to take a screenshot of someone’s Snap. Just saying.