Everyone on Instagram and Facebook will now have the option to hide their public like counts so they can decide what works for them.
It has been done to see if it might depressurise people’s experience on Instagram. Not seeing like counts was beneficial for some, and annoying to others, particularly because people use like counts to get a sense for what’s trending or popular, so now the choice is personal.
More ways have been looked upon to give people control over their experience. That’s why they announced new tools to allow people to filter offensive content from their DMs and gave people ways to control what they see and share on Facebook’s News Feed – like the Feed Filter Bar, Favorites Feed and Choose Who Can Comment.
New options to hide public like counts
From now on, there will be option to hide like counts on all posts in the feed. There will also be option to hide like counts on own posts, so others can’t see how many likes on the posts. This way, one can focus on the photos and videos being shared, instead of how many likes posts get.
One can hide like counts on others’ posts by visiting the new posts section in settings. This control applies to all the posts in the feed.
One can also choose to hide like counts before sharing a post. One can turn this setting on or off, even after it goes live. People want more flexibility, so this option has been given. In the next few weeks one can see both of these controls come to Facebook.
Collaborating with experts and creators
What one person wants from their Instagram experience is different from the next, and people’s needs are changing. They have been working closely with third-party experts to better understand how to empower people, build self-awareness and shape a more positive experience on Instagram.
They are also funding more external research about people’s experiences on Instagram, and how they can improve their policies and products to support their community. They are currently requesting research proposals from global academics and non-profits. If interested find more information here on how to submit.
In India, they also recently collaborated with the Young Leaders for Active Citizenship (YLAC) to initiate the fifth edition of the ‘Counter Speech Fellowship’, a programme that engages creative teens to use the power of visual storytelling to start meaningful conversations on issues that are important to young citizens around the world. This includes the themes of bullying, diversity, mental well-being and gender equality.
Changing the way people view like counts is a big shift. They will continue working on new ways to give people more choice, so they feel good about the time they spend on their apps.