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Instagram is sliding Stories likes out of your DMs

Cleaning up the thirst.
By Amanda Yeo  on 
Instagram app icon seen on a smartphone screen.
Reactions to Instagram Stories are about to become much less intrusive. Credit: Jaap Arriens / NurPhoto via Getty Images

Instagram is rolling out simpler Story likes from today, allowing users to show their appreciation for others' Stories without having to send them a DM. The new feature should make interacting with Stories much less messy — at least, from an aesthetic point of view.

Once the update hits you, you'll be able to find the private Story like option between the "Send message" text box and the paper airplane icon when you watch Stories on Instagram. A new heart-shaped button will appear there which you can simply tap to like a Story, just like liking a post in your Instagram Feed.

"[T]hat like will show up in your viewer sheet, not in your DM thread with them," said Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri. "And if they want to see all their likes, or if you post a story and you want to see your likes, you can go to the viewer sheet for that story and there will be a little heart icon from any viewer who actually liked that Story."

Unlike the hearts on main Feed posts, Story likes will not be public. They also won't have a public count, so nobody but the original creator and you will know you were the only one who enjoyed their experimental pivot to feet pics.

Up until now, getting reactions to your Instagram Stories was frequently more annoying than satisfying. Whether a quick reaction emoji or a written message, every Story response was sent to the creator via a DM, which could quickly fill chat logs with clutter.

The new private Story likes feature will reduce some of that, making it slightly less embarrassing to slide into someone's DMs after liking all their Stories. Only heart-shaped likes are available though — so you'll still have to DM your peach emojis.

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