In April, Instagram rolled out its hidden like test, an experimental feature for its Canadian users. The feature hid the number of likes on a post to see if it benefited users positively. Despite the results from the Canadian tests being unreleased, Instagram has now expanded its experiment. In order to gather more data, Instagram is hiding like and view counts for selected users in Brazil, Italy, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand and Australia. This news comes after Instagram’s announcement of features that assist in the war against cyber bullying.
The Instagram hidden like feature
These selected users will see a message pop up on the app that reads: “We want your followers to focus on what you share, not how many likes your posts get.” This message was also reflected in a tweet sent out by Instagram.
The Instagram hidden like testers will be able to monitor the likes and views on their posts but their followers will only have a very vague idea. In a sample image shared by Instagram, the line beside the heart reads “Liked by [user] and others.”
With this expansion, Instagram might finally release the results of this experiment. The company will be able to definitively tell if hiding likes enhances positivity in user behavior. Maybe this experimental feature will help stop people competing with each other.
Hidden likes vs the public
This feature, if approved for global updates, might spell the end for influencers. In a nutshell, influencers make their living off of likes and follower counts. This feature might hinder their prospects at gaining clients or even followers. In terms of regular users, many have applauded this feature while many do not back it. Some say that the likes on their posts helped increase their self-esteem and that, without it, it sent them spiraling.