TikTok is trialling a new vanishing video stories feature called TikTok Stories and people don’t know what to think.
This new design will echo a function first seen on a major scale with Snapchat years ago, where people can post new content for 24 hours before it is automatically deleted.
It has since been replicated across competitors including Instagram, Facebook and now video platform TikTok, which is owned by China’s ByteDance and one of the world’s fastest growing social media apps.
Discussing its new trial of the function, TikTok told the BBC: “We’re always thinking about new ways to bring value to our community and enrich the TikTok experience.”
The spokesperson continued: “Currently we’re experimenting with ways to give creators additional formats to bring their creative ideas to life for the TikTok community.”
The new feature is currently only being tested in small markets outside of the US, but it could end up following the same trend as Fleets.
Will it be just as doomed as Fleets?
TikTok’s new feature will bring back fresh – and not necessarily fond – memories for some social media users who use rival platform Twitter.
Twitter followed its rivals’ lead and rolled out the same function, called Fleets, earlier this year.
Other than being the ideal place to drop a thirst trap, Fleets proved rather unpopular.
The platform then dropped it after just eight months of use.
A tweet from Twitter’s official account read: ”We’re removing Fleets on August 3, working on some new stuff.”
Acknowledging the divided reaction Fleets caused among its users, the tweet added: “We’re sorry or you’re welcome.”
It received more than 500,000 likes, and users flooded to the comments section, with one account writing: “The five people who used fleets must be really disappointed.”
But, others tweeted: “Removing fleets would push away part of your userbase, they’re going to go to Instagram now.
“You’re literally shooting yourself in the foot.”
Another referenced the rather short time the feature was available to users, joking: “That was fleeting.”
But, it looks like the function might end up being a better fit for TikTok as it is already a video-sharing platform.
Social media consultant Matt Navarra tweeted: “Ephemeral TikToks coming soon. This is going to be popular #justahunch.”
Another Twitter account noted: “This was inevitable.
“ByteDance has been looking for ways to get into connecting friends for years.
“They’re talented, they move fast, and they are nothing if not determined.”
Others were divided, with one Twitter user claiming: “Just ’cause everyone is doing it doesn’t mean they should...
“If Twitter took them down, that should be enough of a sign.”
There’s no indication that this trend of vanishing videos is going anywhere, either.
WhatsApp, owned by Facebook, has also rolled out a new feature where users can post photos or videos that disappear after being viewed once.