Instagram Replacing Swipe Up Gesture to Access Links in Stories With Stickers by August 30

3 months ago 16
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Instagram is getting rid of the swipe up gesture to access links in Stories and replacing it with stickers. Some users have reported that they have received a notification in the app stating this change and that it will be implemented from August 30. Users who post Instagram Stories can add links to them and viewers can use the swipe up gesture while watching the story to access the link. As of now, Instagram has not shared details about this change.

App reverse engineer Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) pointed out on Twitter that Instagram will be removing the swipe up links feature from August 30 and replacing it with a new link sticker option. Later, YouTuber Sam Sheffer posted a screenshot of the message that users are apparently receiving from Instagram.

“Starting August 30, swipe up links will go away. To add a link to your story, use the new link sticker,” the message read. This message has not yet reached all Instagram users yet so it is unclear if this will be a global rollout.

When adding an Instagram Story, a verified Instagram user can add a link to the story that can be accessed by viewers of the story by using a swipe up gesture, hence the term ‘swipe up links'. With the new ‘link sticker' option, it seems like users will be able to put these stickers that have links embedded anywhere on the story. Users will likely be able to select from a range of stickers as well.

Gadgets 360 reached out to Instagram for clarity on this development, and were given a confirmation:

Confirming that we'll begin converting people who currently have "swipe-up" link access to the link sticker starting on August 30. That includes businesses and creators who are verified or have hit our threshold for follower count.

Stickers are a core part of the Stories creation experience, and we want to streamline how people can share what matters to them. With the link sticker, our community will have:

  • A streamlined stories creation experience: Stories stickers like Donation, Music, Poll, and now Link, help you further express yourself and share what matters to you on Instagram — in this case links.
  • Added creative control: The sticker looks and functions the same way as others (i.e. question, poll, and location) - providing increased creator control. It can toggle to different styles, be resized, and be placed anywhere on your story for maximum impact.
  • Further engagement: We also know that engagement and closeness are important to people. Users can receive quick reactions and replies on posts that have the link sticker, like any other story that is shared (e.g. the tray of emojis), whereas you couldn't receive feedback with the “swipe-up” link.

We're also still evaluating whether to expand link access to more accounts in the future (we announced we started testing the link sticker back in June), and looking at things like integrity and safety, how this could impact spread of misinfo and spam, etc. This transition to link stickers from swipe-up will help us determine whether it's the right decision before expanding access to more people. 

Earlier this month, the Facebook-owned social networking platform announced a set of new features that are aimed at protecting people from abuse on its platform. These give its users the ability to limit comments and direct messages (DM) during spikes of increased attention. Stronger warnings will be given when users try to post offensive language.

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