In October, Egyptian archeologists made headlines around the world after they uncovered more than 100 perfectly preserved ancient sarcophaguses, buried over 2,500 years ago. 

History lovers may be drooling at the discovery, but when it comes to making things that last, social media seems to be heading in the opposite direction. Take Facebook, for instance, and its new Vanish mode.

Developed for its Messenger and Instagram platforms, it allows users to write messages that automatically delete after they have been read and the recipient has left the chat. 

“We designed Vanish mode with safety and choice in mind, so you control your experience,” said Bridget Pujals, Messenger Product Manager, and Manik Singh, Instagram Product Manager. 

The tool, which is scheduled to come to Europe after its US debut, can be activated by swiping up on a smartphone in an existing chat thread. To go back to the original messaging mode, simply swipe up again. 

One feature we particularly like is if anyone takes a screenshot of a chat in Vanish mode, users are automatically notified.  Stalkers, take note.

Messenger and Instagram aren’t the only ones jumping on Snapchat’s here-today-gone-tomorrow concept. Facebook recently enabled WhatsApp messages to disappear after seven days, LinkedIn launched Stories, as it aims to shed its stuffy image, while Twitter’s Fleets, which the platform said “help start conversations” also last for just 24 hours.

Our takeaway: ‘time’ to make your first impression count,

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