Just to avoid the sheep herd mentality, Instagram is trying to hide like count from the posts. See if your country is part of this test run.
Have you been always of the view that the pictures or posts with so many likes already are engaging in more customers even when they aren’t worth enough? You might have also seen your friends like a post just because hundreds of other people have liked it. If you have been noticing such things and weren’t enthusiastic about it, then Instagram is bringing in one more feature in the market.
We’ll be discussing these features, the possible reasons and the countries covered in the test run, in this article. In short, we’ll be trying to cover it from every possible aspect, so that you can actually be up to date about the major changes in your favorite social media platform.
What are these changes all about?
If you are a regular user of Instagram, it is not possible that you wouldn’t have noticed the likes on your post. So, the point is there was a feature on Instagram just similar to the likes of Facebook. But with the new update, Instagram would be removing it.
What is the reason behind it?
The forum and its administration want the people to decide on their own if the particular post is worth liking or not rather than showcasing the likes of the others to attract more.
Additionally, another reason behind this change of feature is that the forum wants people to post anything that they like or want, not fearing the number of likes that a particular post would generate for them. Similarly, even if the number of likes is too low, people won’t fear public humiliation, and the result would be continued sharing.
Has this Instagram feature been in practice for a long time?
Actually, Instagram tried to roll this feature out as a test feature. So, it selected a few countries for the first test and response from the audience. Recently, it had increased the scope of testing after getting an initial positive response. This shows that this particular update has been part of the implementation process for a few months now.
When and where the hiding of the likes feature started?
In April, the forum proposed this test feature and implemented it for some of the users of Instagram in Canada. After three months, the scope of testing was widened to the other countries too. These countries included Ireland, Italy, Japan, Brazil, Australia, and New Zealand.
In November, Instagram told the users that the testing hiding feature would be launched in the United States, and a few accounts won’t be able to see the likes feature. But just a few days later, the experiment was extended globally, so, at the moment, there are a few users testing this no like count availability feature of Instagram in every country.
If you haven’t noticed your Instagram yet, then check it out as your Insta account could also be the part of the test program.
How would you know if your account is the part of the test run?
Firstly, no “like icon” for any of the posts would be a clear indication that you are the part of the test run. However, Instagram does not leave its users in confusion, and this is why you, as a user, would get a notice, “Testing a change to how you see likes.” So, if you have this notice on your account, then your posting habits and the feedback about “no like” policy would be noticed by the company.
Just to keep it clear, if your account has been chosen for testing, then any of the things that you’ll post in the future would have a “no like feature” on. So, your audience won’t be able to see how many likes have you got on your profile. But yes, obviously, you’ll be in a position to see the total number of likes for your posts.
But how would it impact users?
The basic principle for which this feature is being introduced is that people won’t create content for likes only. So, for general people, this is going to be a helpful move in two ways. Firstly, the users won’t have to worry about the number of likes that they would get on a particular post, thus making them more comfortable for sharing stuff. Secondly, the posts created by the audience to show the influence through “more likes” is not going to be there. So, overall, users can expect meaningful and worthy content.
But for the influencers, this new feature is going to be very problematic. The number of likes showed the influence and engagement level of the people for a post, which actually helped them in making money out of it. But without this feature, how would small influencers manage to prove their authority and influence over others.
Luckily, Instagram realizes this aspect, as well. On November 14, 2019, one of the tweets from Instagram acknowledged this fact by mentioning, “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.”
So, with this tweet, you can probably expect some other new feature in the pipeline as well that would focus on solving this problem of value transmission across the partners. At the moment, we aren’t sure about it, but we’ll definitely be sharing it as soon as we’ll hear something reliable about it.
How have the test users taken this update?
The results of the test users are still unknown. According to Instagram, users have responded positively towards this change. In one of the tweets from the forum it was mentioned, “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”. But the problem here is that the indicators of positivity have not been disclosed by the community.
One of the possible metrics that Instagram could be using to measure this “positivity” is the number of posts and the active time on the application, despite the introduction of this new “no like count” feature. But this is just a guess, and no specific base has been found for this explanation.
Some of the users of Instagram have actually shown their resentment over the “no like feature as well. One of the random users of the application actually posted the screenshot while deleting the application. Similarly, other users have also shown their concern over “no like count availability.”
What about Facebook?
Yeah, with Instagram testing no like feature, you would have probably had a similar thought about Facebook too. Obviously, it is the parent company of Instagram, and there are high chances of relevance in the policies.
Facebook has also been testing to hide the number of likes for the public. This feature is under test for the Australian audience at the moment. Facebook users of Australia would see the “liked by friend and others” rather than the total like count.
Will this “no like count” feature stay?
Probably yes, because Instagram has not only regarded the feedback from the users as positive but has also extended the test feature to the entire globe. So, that means it is planning to keep this feature there. However, as it is one of the major features, so the forum wants to be sure that it is making the right decision. This is why it has been taking so long for the proper implementation of this feature.
Additionally, it is also expected that Instagram would satisfy the content creators first before applying it fully for all the users and profiles because, in this condition, the influencers won’t be happy at all.
Lately, a number of Instagram features have been coming. A few of them have been trying to provide more opportunities for the advertisers, whereas the others are to improve the experience of the users. The ultimate purpose of all these features is to provide a great user experience to all the users, including the advertisers, content creators, and followers.
Let’s see if this hiding like count feature is actually going to be implemented or will it be taken back. In any case, we’ll keep you updated.
Do you think hiding “like count” would create more engagement from the users? Let us know your opinion in the comments section.