Instagram test visualizes hiding 'Like' counts from viewers

Instagram Spotted Testing Co Watching Feature on App

Serial tipster and reverse engineering expert, Jane Manchun Wong, who first spotted the design change test, shared a screenshot of her Instagram post on which only one person who liked the post was shown.

Removing Likes from public view would be a major change for Instagram and could affect the type of content many people post.

Instagram said the removal of visible Likes from posts is still just an internal prototype.

Nevertheless, the timing of the discovering is intriguing: Earlier this week, the Information Commissioner's Office, a data watchdog agency in the United Kingdom, suggested that social media networks refrain from using "nudge techniques," such as the "like" button, which encourages kids to share more and more of what could be private and sensitive information about themselves.

In a statement, an Instagram spokesperson said the feature is not being tested "at the moment", but that "exploring ways to reduce pressure on Instagram is something we're always thinking about".

Like counts have induced a sense of competition and could sometimes be entirely dispiriting.

"I think it would affect my business", says beauty influencer Nanite Jean-Aimee, whose account @melaninmakeup has some 12,200 followers. However, we are pretty sure this decision will leave influencers unhappy who make money off this platform based on how many likes their posts get and the number of followers they have.

You can check out screenshots below. Now, Instagram could be adding a new feature where the app will hide the amount of likes users receive on their photos. Instead, they express awareness of the issue at hand.



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