What you need to know
- Instagram has announced it is expanding testing of private like counts globally.
- It had previously indicated testing would roll out to parts of the U.S. this week.
- Testing has already taken place in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, Italy, Japan, and New Zealand with positive results.
Instagram has announced that it is expanding testing of private likes counts globally, which means users who are in the test won't see the number of likes on videos or photos, except for their own.
Over on Twitter Instagram said:
Starting today, we're expanding our test of private like counts globally. If you're in the test, you'll no longer see the total number of likes and views on photos and videos posted to Feed unless they're your own.
It further stated:
While the feedback from early testing in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, Italy, Japan, and New Zealand has been positive, this is a fundamental change to Instagram, and so we're continuing our test to learn more from our global community. In addition, we understand that like counts are important for many creators, and we are actively thinking through ways for creators to communicate value to their partners.
The latter shows Instagram is aware of the impact hiding likes may have on influencers and advertising, but clearly a solution seems to still be in the works. Instagram had previously announced that it would roll out testing to parts of the U.S. this week, however, this latest announcement seems to suggest it has opted for a global launch instead.
The testing screen (below) also highlights:
We want your followers to focus on what you share, not how many likes your posts get. During this test, only you will be able to see the total number of likes on your posts.
There is no indication at this stage as to who will or won't be included in the test. CEO of Instagram Adam Mosseri had previously told users that it wanted Instagram to be the safest place on the internet and that protecting young people were at the forefront of this new initiative.