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After years of talking about it, Facebook officially released its likes-hiding option on Facebook and Instagram. Users of both apps can choose to hide the number of likes and reactions for their own posts or others on their feeds.
Let's focus on Insta. Head of Instagram Adam Mosseri said that the hiding likes option was first created to "depressurize the experience" on the platform. But after a bunch of testing, Instagram found that user wellbeing and app usage didn't change when likes were removed.
Despite little evidence that removing likes would accomplish...anything, the company still decided to roll out the feature "as a matter of personal choice," but it's getting criticized by the e-commerce community it hopes to attract. The biggest reactions to the decision were from smaller business accounts and influencers who rely on engagement metrics to get paid.
Looking ahead...44 US attorneys general recently told Mark Zuckerberg that the company's Instagram for Kids project was a bad idea. Facebook's push to create a healthier environment may be an attempt to change opponents' minds.
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