Instagram is trying out a new feature where the amount of ‘likes’ can no longer be viewed on any users’ posts.
During the test, the total number of likes from photos and videos will be removed from sight on your main feed, permalinks, and profiles. Only a few usernames of people who have liked the post will be shown, instead of a total amount. The sole person who will be able to view the full amount of likes is the account’s owner.
What is the point of not being able to see likes on Instagram?
Instagram explained they would rather have “followers focus on what you share, not how many likes your posts get.” Instagram’s goal is to get users to focus more on using the app rather than who is receiving the most likes. Because users have been known to delete posts when they feel as if they haven’t gotten enough likes, the app hopes to lessen the amount of negative effects related to the amount of likes received; These effects include anxiety, depression, and loneliness. Instagram’s hopes of removing the idea of having the most “likeable” post could potentially decrease competition and grow authenticity across the platform.
What would be the downside to this change?
Many influencers are worried about how their feeds rank in regards to Instagram’s algorithm, as Instagram is known to be a leading source of their income. The app hasn’t expressed taking steps to conceal follower counts, as it’s the main source for sponsorships for influencers. Developers will potentially have to create a new way to display the popularity of a post.
Instagram will have to see a growth in user engagement and positive interactions to go forward with the new feature. It’s currently being tested in Canada, and there’s been no word of the test being implemented in other locations.
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