Addicted to the ‘Gram? Then you probably know that the wildly popular social media is owned by Facebook, which is why a hidden like feature has been tested out in Canada earlier this year. Now Instagram is expanding the offering, and testing it out in six more countries.
Before you log into your profile, South Africa has not made the cur as one of the six.
The countries that did make the cut though are Australia, Brazil, Ireland, Italy, Japan and New Zealand, with the platform taking to Twitter to confirm the news.
We want your friends to focus on the photos and videos you share, not how many likes they get. You can still see your own likes by tapping on the list of people who’ve liked it, but your friends will not be able to see how many likes your post has received.
— Instagram (@instagram) July 17, 2019
The feature will not be available countrywide though, with a select number of users getting access in each of the newly added regions. Given that this is a test, it’s more than likely that only high-profile influencers on the platform will get access, as this would offer the largest number of followers in order to trial the hidden like.
According to TechCrunch, users who have access to the feature will be able to see precisely how many likes a post receives, with their friends only getting a vague of idea of the number.
As the tweet above explains Instagram wants friends to focus on the content and not how many likes it receives, but that ultimately sounds contrary to the purpose of a like button in our view.
With the platform now rolling out this test to more users, it should be interesting to see if hiding likes proves a more effective tool for engagement, but we’re not too optimistic, especially as likes have proved to be the de facto system on Facebook and Twitter, despite both platforms trying to add changes.