Instagram is set to expand the test of hiding likes from posts on the network to more countries, with the US next in line. The Facebook owned social network has confirmed that very soon, it will start hiding likes on posts for users accessing Instagram in the US. This will mean likes on posts will be hidden from the Feed, the web version and also the user’s own profile. Adam Mosseri, CEO, Instagram confirmed this at the WIRED25 conference.
Instagram is currently hiding likes on posts in Canada, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Brazil, Australia, and New Zealand as part of its expanding test to not put a number to how popular (or the perception of popularity) a social media post may be. In fact, the very act of using third-party apps and tools to buy likes was becoming a rampant problem on Instagram, which effectively hid the genuine interaction and interaction with a post. Influencers who often believe that being a social media influencer is a full-time job, must be quite worried. And so should the brands who enable them be, too.
A 2017 research by Sway Ops, an online anti-fraud company, suggested that these so-called influencers don’t actually deliver on what they promise. A single day’s worth of posts tagged #sponsored or #ad on Instagram contained over 50 percent fake engagements and out of 118,007 comments, only 20,942 were not made by bot followers, the research says. Bot comments are responsible for over 40 percent of total comments and that more than 15 percent of influencers who sign on to do sponsored never create a post—and this included cases where they took physical products and gadgets.