December 19, 2019

Hidden likes


According to CBS News (), Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, announced in an interview in June 2019 that Instagram would make the ‘like’ count private. This metric has become vitally important for many users. According to MediaCom’s report Connected Kids (), 52% of teens in the UK felt the need to constantly check for updates. 59% said that social media helped them to avoid missing out. 40% of young... users often compared themselves to others on social media, and 32% worried about the number of likes they received on a post. Psychologists think that this situation promotes mental health issues. Instagram has been testing the hidden likes feature for months in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Italy, Brazil, and Japan. Since November, it has been rolled out for testing in the US. Any user can still press the like button, but only the author of the post will be able to feel the love. Mosseri answered that Instagram waited ‘a little’ to hurt the platform. The main idea was to stop ‘a competition’ for harvesting likes. Many influencers and experts made comments on this theme. Some of them support this initiative. Some thought that it would hurt influencers and advertisers and damage the current working business model. For instance, singer and actress Nicki Minaj vowed to no longer use the platform, but Instagram influencer Kim Kardashian West agreed that the move would be beneficial for people’s mental health. There are other tools and analytic reports that can be used instead of likes. Also, buying likes from bots became worthless. People should value a post as it is, not the number of likes of other users. It will be very interesting to see what Instagram will discover and what other social networks will do further.

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