INSTAGRAM has considered hiding the number of likes a post on the app gets.
The hope is that hiding the “like count” would reduce the pressure people feel to “compete” with other Instagram users.
Instagram Racking up Instagram likes puts undue pressure on users, some experts believe
Instagram has already built this feature into a version of the app, but hasn’t publicly released it.
It was first spotted by Jane Wong, a software engineer who regularly uncovers hidden features buried inside Facebook and Instagram.
She shared images of the Instagram feature, which explained: “We want your followers to focus on what you share, not how many likes your posts get.”
It went on: “During this test, only the person who shared a post will see the total number of likes it gets.”
Instagram is testing hiding like count from audiences,as stated in the app: “We want your followers to focus on what you share, not how many likes your posts get” pic.twitter.com/MN7woHowVN— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) April 18, 2019
The feature was later confirmed by Instagram in a statement.
“We’re not testing this at the moment, but exploring ways to reduce pressure on Instagram is something we’re always thinking about,” an Instagram spokesperson explained.
Of course, it’s entirely possible that this feature might never make it to the live version of Instagram.
Instagram regularly cooks up new features and changes – and typically tests them in advance of launching them on the app.
So the feature could change significantly before launching, or may simply be scrapped altogether.
But it’s clear that Instagram is keen to ease social pressures on users.
The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office recently recommended that social networks offer users the ability to turn off likes.
The advice is aimed at protecting younger users who are more vulnerable to pressures to share their lives online.
However, Instagram’s likes are a key part of the platform, and could be missed by users.
Instagram – the key factsHere’s what you need to know…
Instagram is a social network for sharing photos and videos
It was created back in October 2010 as an iPhone-exclusive app
A separate version for Android devices was released 18 months later
The app rose to popularity thanks to its filters system, which lets you quickly edit your photos with cool effects
When it first launched, users could only post square 1:1 ratio images, but that rule was changed in 2015
In 2012, Facebook bought Instagram for $1billion in cash and stock
In 2018, some analysts believe the app is worth closer to $100billion
In October 2015, Instagram confirmed that more than 40billion photos had been uploaded to the app
And in 2018, Instagram revealed that more than a billion people were using the app every month
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Instagram users were recently warned that millions of passwords were exposed for workers to see.
And there’s also concern over the bizarre Instagram Nasty List scam that’s “sweeping through” the social network.
There’s good news on the horizon though: Instagram’s new “co-watching” feature will let you view clips at the same time as your pals – and see their reactions.
Do you think Instagram should start hiding likes? Let us know in the comments!
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