Instagram users can now have more control over how they use the app. Facebook and Instagram is giving users the option to hide their public counts, tereby allowing them to identify what works best for them and their situation.
No More Instagram Likes Count
In 2019, some Instagram users noticed that their posts' like counts disappeared, only displaying a username. The text "Liked by (username) and others" appear next to three icons of users who liked that post on the bottom left of the photo, under the like, comment and share icons.
Instagram rolled this test out to a few countries "to see if it might depressurize people's experience on Instagram." In the social media app that has quickly turned into a platform where comparison is cultivated, unintentional or not, this was a bold move for the company.
"We will make decisions that hurt the business if they help people's well-being and health," Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri said at Wired25, an annual panel hosted by Wired, back in 2019.
Not a lot of users appreciated this bold change, however, as statistical data like the "likes count" help creators, influencers, businesses and other famous pages to figure out what is trending or what posts get the most traction. Instagram personalities can present these data to companies that want to partner with them as proof that their brand deal will yield great reach and the company's budget for such a deal is justified.
In the tests, the total number of likes was hidden to everyone but yourself, and you can access it by clicking the "others" in "and others." This allowed people to see beyond the likes and focus on the post, and maybe the comments.
Other social media platforms have also experimented or thought of experimenting with removing public metrics. Business Insider said Facebook, the owner of Instagram, has also dabbled with removing the like counts on posts back in 2019. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey also expressed wanting to remove public likes from tweets over the years.
So we’re testing a new option that lets you decide the experience that’s best for you – whether that’s choosing not to see like counts on anyone else’s posts, turning them off for your own posts, or keeping the original experience.— Adam Mosseri 😷 (@mosseri) April 14, 2021
Instagram App Update Gives You Control
Instagram, and its parent company Facebook, said they are looking for more ways for users to have more control over their experience inside their apps. Tools were rolled out allowing people to filter offensive content from the DM inboxes and let users control what they could see and share on their Facebook News Feed with the "Favorites Feed", "Feed Filter Bar", and "Choose Who Can Comment."
These tools allow users to cultivate a safer and healthier social media space for an overall healthier experience inside the apps--spaces some individuals choose not to participate in anymore after having a series of unpleasant and harmful interactions on those platforms.
Now, the social media company is giving its users the option to hide the like counts on all posts in your feed. In addition, users can hide the like counts on their own posts that way others can't see how many likes those posts get.
How to Hide Your Instagram Likes Count From the Public
You can access these new updates by heading over to the new "Posts" section found in the Settings.
Instagram is also actively collaborating with experts and creators to create a healthier interaction between the user and the platform. A new Instagram Guide has been released to offer advice on how to manage pressure online.
The company is also funding more external research about people's experiences on the platform to improve their policies and strengthen community support.
Data Portal said there are 4.33 billion social media users right now. That would be more than 55 percent of the total global population. The demographics skew to the younger population.
A significant portion of the interactions they have with their peers happens over social media. More than ever now during this global pandemic still forcing social interactions to be few and far between.