Instagram testing new setting to hide likes, Facebook to follow suit
Those accounts that are chosen for the test will see the option to hide likes, which can be enabled in the app’s settings, which will stop you from seeing any likes on your home feed, while also allowing you to hide likes from your own individual posts.
The novel coronavirus pandemic has taken a toll on everyone's mental health, what with the rolling lockdowns and social distancing. Thankfully, social media has been an excellent support system for almost everyone, connecting us when we can't meet in person. However, the same social pressure that existed before the pandemic hit – tied to likes on posts, hasn't really gone away. Instagram and Facebook will now begin a new test to allow users to control whether they see like counts on the company's services.
Readers may recall that Instagram was already working on (and testing in limited areas) hiding likes for certain users, but it seems that the company's work on the ‘feature' was delayed thanks to the pandemic – when the company started working on more pressing and important features, according to a report by TechCrunch. Now, the company is ready to test the same experience, but with an interesting change - it is giving the choice of viewing and showing like counts to its users.
Some of the feedback that the company received was that likes were actually useful for their pages and profiles to keep track of things they were interested in, while users who had to partner with brands or companies who sponsored their posts couldn't do so as easily without displaying a number of likes. Meanwhile, the same arguments about the negative aspect of the likes on the social network putting pressure on younger users still persist.
However, not all users will have the option to hide their likes. This is still a limited test, that is likely to expand to other users in the future. Those accounts that are chosen for the test will see the option to hide likes, which can be enabled in the app's settings. This will stop you from seeing any likes on your home feed, while also allowing you to hide likes from your own individual posts. According to the report, Instagram users will see the test first, with the same test coming to users in the near future.