Instagram like counts, should we show them or hide them? Instagram cannot decide, so now they will ask us to choose.
Some Instagram users are seeing a prompt inviting them to choose between leaving things as-is, not seeing likes on other users’ posts, or turning off likes on their own.
Starting in April 2019, Instagram like counts begun being hidden on some accounts as part of a global test the company is still currently running. At the time, Instagram told these account holders that “We want your followers to focus on what you share, not how many likes your posts get. During this test, only the person who shared a post will see the total number of likes it gets.”
Not everyone took well to like counts being hidden. Some users saw the benefit and said that not seeing like counts removed some of the pressure they had experienced on the platform prior. Others, however, felt like it removed their ability to track what was trending and popular, which in turn helped them decide what to post on their own accounts.
A Facebook spokesperson said, “In 2019, we started hiding like counts for a small group of people to understand if it lessens some pressure when posting to Instagram. Some people found this beneficial, but some still wanted to see like counts so they could track what’s popular. So, we’re testing a new option that lets you decide the experience that’s best for you—whether that’s choosing not to see like counts on anyone else’s posts, turning them off for your own posts, or keeping the original experience. We’re testing this on Instagram to start, but we’re also exploring a similar experience for Facebook. We will learn from this new small test and have more to share soon.”
A similar experience is also being tested for Facebook, the spokesperson said.
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