Signal Rolls Out Stories, But Does Anyone Want Them?
While Signal usually sets itself apart from other messaging apps due to its focus on privacy, the app has introduced a feature to appeal to mainstream users. The company announced that it has rolled out Stories for its mobile app. But does anyone really want them?
Stories Come to Signal
It seems like every app has some version of Stories or disappearing uploads that can be viewed by contacts. Even LinkedIn introduced Stories in 2020, one of the more unexpected platforms to jump on the bandwagon.
Signal announced on 7 November 2022 that Stories are now available on the Android and iOS versions of the app, with the feature set to roll out to the desktop version “soon”.
But if you’re tempted to roll your eyes at the news and wonder why the company has decided to implement the feature, apparently users really wanted it. In a post on the Signal blog, the company said Stories have a natural place on messaging apps and that it was one of the most common feature requests.
Stories also happen to be one of the most common feature requests we receive from all over the world. People use them, people want them, so we’re providing a way to do stories privately. And without having to wade through a sea of ads.
Stories and Privacy on Signal
While Stories brings Signal’s features closer to its competitors, the company emphasizes that its focus is still on privacy. In its release statement, Signal notes that the feature is “not about building a following or amplifying content for engagement”.
The company notes:
Our focus is and has always been on facilitating private, intimate conversations between you and the people who matter to you.
Similarly to WhatsApp and Snapchat, you can select the audience for your Stories on Signal. You can choose to manually hide Stories from specific contacts or create custom Stories that only select contacts will see. You can also choose whether to allow replies and reactions.
In a slight spin on the feature, you can also choose to share your Story to a specific group chat. This shares the post with anyone who is in an existing group chat, whether or not they are in your contacts.
But what if you don’t want to see Stories on Signal? Well, you can actually opt out of the feature. If you do this, you won’t see stories in groups or in updates from friends.
Stories Are Now on Signal, But You Still Have a Choice
For those who are sick of seeing platforms copying each other, you may be surprised to find out that Stories was one of the most frequent feature requests for Signal. But luckily, with the rollout of the feature, you also have the choice to opt-out of seeing these updates if you’re not a fan.