On April 19th, Weibo officially launched Weibo Story (微博故事). A beta version is now available on the latest version of the iOS app (version 7.4.0) but it’s only open to some users (iOS app users and those verified ones with personal ID card or Alipay account information) after application. Lu Han, a popular Chinese actor and singer, became the first invited celebrity to try this new feature.
1. What is Weibo Story?
Weibo Story is a newly launched feature on Weibo, which is like Instagram Stories or Facebook Stories. Users can easily post a 15-second short video or photo to share all the moments of their daily life. When they share multiple videos or photos, they appear together in a slideshow format.
Weibo Story is not like normal Weibo posts. It provides abundant interesting stickers, text effects, filters, and many other editing functions but the post can’t be reposted, downloaded or shared to external platforms. A Weibo Story post disappears after 24 hours and no longer appears in feeds or on the Weibo account page.
2. How to create your own Weibo Story?
There are 3 ways for users to create a Weibo Story.
- Click the camera icon in the upper left corner of the homepage on the mobile app to add a story.
- If users haven’t posted any stories within 24 hours, they can click the “My Story (我的故事)” icon at the top of the homepage to add a story.
- Shortcut: Users can slide right on the home page to enter the camera interface for Weibo Story.
Users can record a video or shoot a photo by long pressing or clicking the shutter button. Existing photos or videos can also be uploaded. Users can slide up the screen to see the latest (within 24 hours) photos or videos in their album and click on them to upload.
When recording videos, various effect settings like brightness control, flashlight and camera switch can be used.
After finishing shooting, users can add special effects to photos, including filters, stickers and text, to make their story more attractive and interesting.
After editing, users can click the arrow icon in the bottom right corner to post the story.
3. Where can you view Weibo Story?
- My Story (我的故事): “My Story” is always positioned ahead of everyone else’s stories. Users can click to check their own published stories.
- Other users’ stories: Users can view stories published by the Weibo accounts they follow. After viewing, the coloured circle surrounding the account icon turns grey.
- Hot Story Recommendation (热门推荐): Users can click the “Hot Story Recommendation” icon to view popular stories from other accounts.
When users view their own or other people’s Weibo stories, the video stories play automatically one by one. You can click the screen to view the next story for that user or slide left to switch to the next user’s story.
4. Other function settings
Users can click the lower right corner icon for privacy settings.
- Interaction settings: Viewers can leave comments on a Weibo Story. The comments can either appear in the form of bullet screen or are sent to the user via private messages. Users can also disable the comment function.
- Deciding who can comment: Users can allow fans or following accounts to comment only.
- Saving: Users can choose to save their stories to their album automatically after publishing.
5. How are some people using Weibo Story?
At the moment, Weibo Story is temporarily only open to celebrities like stars and KOLs, as well as some official accounts. Most of them use Weibo Story as an alternative to share their daily life or special moments. It is worth mentioning that some KOLs now start to recommend products to their followers on Weibo Story:
You Li Na (@优里娜), a fashion blogger, uploaded a short video on Weibo Story featuring shelves of make-up products in a cosmetics store in the U.S. The white characters on the video read “The discount strength in the U.S. is so big now and NYX’s make-up products are recommended for beginners.”
Shen Weixi (@奥运私人教练沈韦羲), a professional fitness instructor, uploaded a photo of a large can of protein shake with price.
What do you think about Weibo Story? Is it something that you could use? Want to know more about other Weibo features? Please leave a comment below!
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