LinkedIn is the latest platform to embrace the disappearing Stories format. The professional networking site unveiled its latest redesign that makes the company’s months-long experiment with LinkedIn Stories official. Beginning today, the company is rolling out the feature to all its users in the US and Canada, with plans to push it out to everyone in the next few weeks.
LinkedIn’s version of Stories is a lot like what you’d find on Instagram or Snapchat. Take a photo, decorate it with text or a GIF and upload to your profile for all your professional connections to see for 24 hours (you can change up your privacy settings to control who can view your Story.) And, in case you need an extra reminder that the feature exists, LinkedIn will place all your connections’ Stories at the top of your main feed.
That might sound like the last feature you’d want or need on LinkedIn, but the company says there are some benefits to consider. Liz Li, LinkedIn’s senior director of product, says that early tests of the feature have shown that some people are more willing to post when they know it will disappear after 24 hours, rather than live on their LinkedIn profile forever. “Members in the past have found sharing on LinkedIn to be intimidating,” Li told Engadget. “We're hoping it'll spark more conversations from people who just don't really share content on LinkedIn.”
Li also notes that Stories can help coworkers feel connected at a time when many people are still working from home and may otherwise feel disconnected from colleagues. That said, she says the intention is to keep things professional. Stories will feature a rotating “question of the day” that’s supposed to help keep folks on track.
“You're not meant to share the same things that you would on other networks,” Li says. “That doesn't mean you can't share a picture of your dog … but the goal is to keep it keep the conversations in the same vein that you would have right in your workplace.”
Besides Stories, the redesign comes with some other updates. The site’s search features have been overhauled to include new filtering options, and the ability to find online courses and other LinkedIn content from the main search tool. Messaging is also getting another Facebook-like feature with emoji reactions, as well as the ability to start a video call directly from chat. Video calling, which will roll out in October, supports Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Slack and BlueJeans (which is owned by Engadget’s parent company, Verizon).