Instagram hides likes count from Aussie users in new test

Instagram hides likes count from Aussie users in new test
Photo: Unsplash

Instagram is doubling down on its efforts to make the social media platform healthier for its users.

Users from countries including Australia and Japan will no longer see how many likes there are on a post. Instagram reportedly rolled out the test ‘to remove pressure’ on users.

The International trial that began last Thursday hides the like count so instead of numbers, users will now only see a user name “and others” under posts on their feed. However, Instragammers will still be able to view the number of likes that their own posts will receive.

Instagram rolled out the trials following concerns raised about the link between social media platforms and low self-esteem and inadequacy, particularly among the youth.

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A similar trial was launched in Canada back in May and countries affected for current tests include Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Italy, Japan, and Brazil, as reported by the BBC.

In a statement to the BBC, Facebook Australia and New Zealand’s director of policy Mia Garlick said: “We hope this test will remove the pressure of how many likes a post will receive, so you can focus on sharing the things you love.”

Garlick explains that the aim of the test is for users to be free of judgment based on likes and to see “whether this change can help people focus less on likes and more on telling their story”

Amid concerns on how this will affect businesses that use the platform for marketing and others, Instagram says the trial will have no effect on measurement tools. Users will still be able to see the list of people who liked posted content when clicked.