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Anonymous No More: Facebook Stories Shows Who’s Reading

3 April 2017, 10:31 am EDT By Des Luna Tech Times
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Facebook exploits human weakness, says co-founder Sean Parker

If you like checking up people on Facebook anonymously, you might want to avoid viewing their Stories.

Facebook's latest functionality, the Snapchat-like Stories, has a feature that lets the user see who's watched their posts. The viewers appear together with the number of views the story has gained.

Facebook Stories is the recent Snapchat-ization of Facebook after the company also rolled out similar features on its other brands such as Instagram (Stories), Messenger (Messenger Day), and Whatsapp (Status).

Anonymous No More

One feature of Facebook Stories is it allows you to see the people who viewed your story. You can see the names on a list that pops out when you tap the "eye" icon that shows the number of views.

So what does this lack of anonymity mean?

It can discourage creepers from anonymously stalking your Stories. Although you can set the privacy option before you post it - Public, Friends, or Only Me - much like when posting a regular FB post, you can see still specifically who viewed your story.

And therein lies the uncomfortable truth - knowing who watched may create an awkward moment especially if that person is someone you will not even greet in real life. Yes, you may have "friends" on Facebook, but like most of us, not everyone on that list is a real friend in real life.

The good thing that may come out of this lack of anonymity is it makes for a somewhat smaller and more intimate connection with people you really know. A friend IRL whom you don't hear much from in Facebook may surprise you if you see him or her viewing your Stories, which you otherwise wouldn't know in a regular Facebook post. It can also mean a lot if the people you care about actively view your Stories.

Facebook Stories: Another Snapchat Clone

Facebok rolled out Stories on March 28 and it completed the biggest social media's quest to ape Snapchat. Facebook initially launched Stories in its other IPs, such as Instagram, Whatsapp, and Messenger.

Facebook Stories is very much like what Snapchat Stories is: a fun status message that lets you post photos and videos enhanced with several effects using your phone's camera.

"The Facebook camera is packed with dozens of effects like masks, frames, and interactive filters that you can apply to your photos and videos. Reactive effects let you interact with dynamic objects - like falling snow - and style effects apply an artistic filter to your video in real time, letting you turn your everyday selfie into a Picasso-style work of art," wrote Facebook.

These filters include several commercial tie-ins with brands such as Despicable Me 3, Power Rangers, Alien: Covenant, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Smurfs: The Lost Village, and Wonder Woman.

Very much like Snapchat's, these stories will disappear after 24 hours. Sadly, Facebook is not saying if it tracks the people who take screenshots of your stories before they disappear.

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