After years of backlash for creating unhealthy mental comparisons in young people, Instagram seems to be taking measures in reducing the pressures of social media.
According to sources, the app created a new design that is currently acting as an internal prototype that has not been released to the general public. Only a select few people who work for the company have this version.
“We’re not testing this at the moment, but exploring ways to reduce pressure on Instagram is something we’re always thinking about,” a spokesperson said.
With screenshots as evidence, she pointed out the absence of numbers below her post and a notification informing users that they are the only ones who can see the number of likes on their posts.
In a short note written by developers, they explained that Instagram wants “your followers to focus on what you share, not how many likes your posts get.”
So for social media influencers who rely heavily on the popularity of their likes, this may cause huge problems. It could also potentially lead to a decline in social media marketing with paid partnerships through Instagram.
Other new features Wong observed include chat thread stickers for DMs, AR filters for video calls, simultaneous co-watching of recommended videos via DMs, lyrics on screen for the Stories soundtracks, emoji reactions on feed posts and a shopping bag icon for e-commerce to expand the ability to shop directly from the app.
And like the good millennial woman she is, she shared all the screenshots we need as proof.
Obviously none of this has 100% been confirmed, but the fact Instagram allowed a spokesperson to comment on the changes to improve the self doubt and self inflicted feeling of pressure caused by the app indicates that his move may be coming sooner than expected.
I’m sure not having the ability of seeing the amount of likes other users have will help reduce the self comparison. But I’m also sure it will bother other users and will still try to obtain more likes out of blind competition. They’re eliminating one issue but will about to create another one that is bound to happen.
Will not having the ability to see the amount of likes other people have make you feel better about yourself while using the app, or does it even matter? Let us know in the comments below!