Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Stories, the string of photos and videos invented by Snapchat and ripped off by Facebook for Instagram are now being ripped off by ... everyone.

Why it matters: There’s no doubt that the format has been a success and a growing number of companies repurposing it to fit their users’ needs and — hopefully — gain some of their attention.

Driving the news: Spotify is reportedly testing its own version of the Stories format, according to Android Police. The format would enable artists to share content about a particular song’s backstory or inspiration — a natural medium for social media-savvy users and artists and a clever way to capture content that might otherwise end up on other apps.

Others that have also rolled out or tested their own version of Stories:

The bottom line, via Axios tech editor Scott Rosenberg: The story of the internet is one long chronicle of people hopping from one mode of personal sharing to another — from home pages to blogs to social media feeds. New media forms very rarely vanish; they just find new niches as consumption behavior and distribution practices change.

Go deeper: Snapchat goes all in on e-commerce with new ad product launch

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20 mins ago - Health

U.S., Canada and U.K. accuse Russia of trying to steal coronavirus vaccine research

Russian President Vladimir Putin. Photo: Alexei Druzhinin\TASS via Getty Images

Hackers associated with Russian intelligence services are trying to steal information from researchers involved in coronavirus vaccine development, according to a joint advisory by U.K., U.S. and Canadian authorities published Thursday.

The big picture: This isn't the first time a foreign adversary has been accused of attempting to steal COVID-19-related research. U.S. officials in May announced an uptick in Chinese-government affiliated hackers targeting medical research and other facilities in the U.S. for data on a potential cure or effective treatments to combat the virus.

M&A activity falls despite early coronavirus fears

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

In April, several prominent Democrats proposed a moratorium on large mergers and acquisitions. Their argument was that the pandemic would embolden the strong to pounce on the weak, thus reducing competition.

Fast forward: The moratorium never materialized. Nor did the M&A feeding frenzy.

More than 32 million Americans are receiving unemployment benefits

Photo: Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

More than 32 million Americans are receiving some form of unemployment benefits, according to data released by the Labor Department on Thursday.

Why it matters: Tens of millions of jobless Americans will soon have a smaller cash cushion — as coronavirus cases surge and certain parts of the country re-enter pandemic lockdowns — barring an extension of the more generous unemployment benefits that are set to expire at the end of the month.