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Facebook Unveils New User-Generated Feature: Facebook Stories

The point of the new feature is to showcase how Facebookers use the site in compelling ways. Entries are welcome.

The nearly 1 billion users (fewer, of course, if you don't count all those bogus accounts) who use Facebook every day sure share a lot of stuff. However, a lot of it gets lost in the shuffle.

Not anymore thanks to a new feature called Facebook Stories.

The new site launched Thursday, and aims to showcase how Facebookers use the site in compelling ways. Each month features a different theme--the theme for August is "Remembering."

This month's feature tells the story of 27-year-old Mayank Sharma, from New Delhi, India, who lost his memory after contracting a rare form of meningitis. Sharma used Facebook to rebuild the memories he had lost due to contracting the disease. He credits Facebook with helping him "rebuild" his life.

While Sharma's story is an extreme case, it shows the type of stories Facebook is looking for.

What Facebook Looks For

Other showcased features include a group of residents in Guelph, Ontario using civic pride and the town's collective memory to save an important local building, a selection of books to read, musical playlists courtesy of Spotify, and selected articles from the New Yorker Magazine.

Facebook says the books, playlists and New Yorker features will be updated on a monthly basis.

Another monthly feature is the Infographic, which is updated each month to match the theme. This month's edition looks at what we share most. According to Facebook, the most common story shared on the timeline is on travel, which makes up 42% of such stories.

That was followed by stories on moves, posted 18 percent of the time, and the ever-popular relationship change, which appeared 10 percent of the time.

These first stories were handpicked by Facebook, but future editions will include submissions from users. Those who think they might have an interesting story to share with the world via Facebook Stories can submit theirs through an online form.

For more tech news and commentary, follow Ed on Twitter at @edoswald, on Facebook, or on Google+.

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