Instagram Expands Hidden Likes Test to India, Around the World

Instagram Hidden Likes

Instagram Hidden Likes

'Starting today, we're expanding our test of private like counts globally, ' Instagram stated in a tweet. The test is now global and Instagram took to Twitter this morning in hopes of reassuring content creators who make money off their posts.

Instagram says it will be rolling out in groups, and users who are selected in the test will no longer be able to see how many likes a given post has. After Canada, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Brazil, Australia and New Zealand, the platform expanded its test to the U.S. last week.

This test of hiding likes won't affect Instagram influencers as they'll still have access to Instagram analytics that they can share with brands. It's still testing the feature and how people will react, but the company notes that the feedback has been positive so far. And since it's a test, only some of Instagram's users are going to find like counts hidden, while the app will look just as it always has for others.

It remains to be seen if Instagram will hide likes permanently. First of all, I can't see the like counts on other people's posts, neither while I scroll the feed nor when I open them individually. When I open an individual post, I still can't see the total number of likes until I click on "others".

According to a study in Social Media Today, influencers nearly unanimously experienced a drop in their like counts in countries where the the feature was hidden.

Celebrities such as Nicki Minaj and Cardi B have also shared their thoughts with Nicki posting in a now deleted tweetstorm that she will be boycotting the platform while Cardi argues that comments are more harmful than likes on Instagram. Instagram turning against Like counts could start a larger shift in the social media industry toward prioritizing more qualitative enjoyment of sharing, instead of obsessing over the quantification of validation.