Instagram Set to Begin Testing Hiding Like Counts on Posts

A big change is coming to Instagram, and it could be implemented as early as next week. Adam Mosseri, CEO of the photo-sharing platform, announced at a Wired event in San Francisco Friday that like counts will start disappearing for some users soon. It's something the company has already tested out in other countries.

"Right now we're testing making like counts private so you'll be able to see all the likes you're getting on a photo of yours or a video of yours, but no one else will," Mosseri said. "[We're testing it] in seven countries, including Brazil and Japan and Canada, and we're actually announcing that we're going to start testing in the U.S. next week. Not the whole U.S. at once."

He was asked by the panel's moderator what the goal of eliminating like counts is.

"It's about young people. The idea is to try to depressurize Instagram," he said. "Make it less of a competition, give people more of a space to connect with people that they love, things that inspire them… but it's really focused about young people. We have to see how it affects how people feel about the platform, how people use the platform, but I've been spending a lot of time on this personally."

People on social media were quick to share their thoughts on the change.

"People upset are the ones who live off of likes and want others to recognize their worth because they have all these likes," one person wrote. "It's time for you all to come back to earth and step down from your high horse. If you're really that influential then this will have no affect on you."

"Why do I feel like this is a cynical push to control what is trending on the platform so they can decide who gets promoted and they make more advert money," another said. "Maybe im jaded."


"As said before, this is good. People can focus on content and enjoying the platform," a third commented.

Facebook, which owns Instagram, also recently announced a plan to hide like counts from its platform, as well. They're currently testing it in Australia. "We are running a limited test where like, reaction, and video view counts are made private across Facebook," a Facebook spokesperson said. "We will gather feedback to understand whether this change will improve people's experiences.