Why Instagram Cancelled Likes In 7 Countries and How Is It Going To Affect Social Media
A few months ago Instagram did the unthinkable shocking Instagram influencers and bloggers worldwide. It stopped the feature of others seeing how many have liked the post except for the author of the content. The new version was first launched in Canada that was a test experiment where the social media giant was ditching the like feature where that 50k likes you may see on an influencer would be gone. A lot of drama followed with several influencers coming out in social media saying they would have to get jobs now instead and about time too. So why did they stop the likes and how is this going to change social media.
1What exactly happened?
In around April-May, Instagram tested the new feature in Canada and hid all public like counts on photos and videos. They soon expanded the feature to countries like Ireland, New Zealand, Brazil, Australia, Italy and Japan. Canadian users have been like free ever since a social media platform plans to extend the update to other countries soon. Zuckerberg explained that when you scroll through your feed, there are no like counts and you have to go through a list to see who liked your posts and add them yourself. This is what it looks like now.
2Can you still see how many likes you get on your own Instagram posts?
You can still see how many likes you get on posts even though your followers cannot. The number will not also automatically appear beneath your posts, you will instead have to tap the “others” beneath your post to go through the number of likes. All those who came under the purview of the test experiment were notified with messages. If you were selected for the test, you will have seen a banner like in the image below.
3Why did “likes” fall under the “reduction”?
Instagram was considered a harmful social network for mental well being. It is known to cause depression, inferiority complex and anxiety in people. Users relying heavily on the network harbored a constant desire to improve appearances in a photo or video. Heavily processed photos are the norm on Instagram because even a celebrity’s photo if not processed will collect very few likes. Liked photos are always the indicator of popularity that could increase a user’s visibility on Instagram.
4There was a proposal to find out the source of photo editing
Girlguiding which is a UK Youth association has even floated a proposal to create photographs with special tags to indicate the program used to edit a photo such as Facetune or Photoshop. Instagram did not support the proposal but they went ahead and created their own experiment of removing the counter with likes that they felt will create a more relaxed environment for users on the social network.