Instagram is hiding likes in 6 more countries so you can post like no one’s watching

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In an effort to remove the pressure of posting content, Instagram is doubling down on its experiment to hide certain social media metrics in select regions.

In an announcement on Twitter, the company said it is running a test that “hides the total number of likes and video views for some people” in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, Italy, Japan, and New Zealand.

So in case you’re having trouble tracking your frenemies’ social media engagement on Instagram, this is probably the reason why.

The experimental layout is identical to the standard one, with the minor distinction that you will only see the usernames of some of the people that have liked a post. All numbers remain invisible, though.

Here’s what this looks like:

Why’s Instagram doing this?

For the record, this isn’t the first time the Facebook-owned platform has run a similar test.

Indeed, Instagram trialed hiding like counts in Canada back in April 2019. “We are testing this because we want your followers to focus on the photos and videos you share, not how many likes they get,” a spokesperson told TechCrunch at the time.

As my colleague Abhimanyu Ghoshal pointed out last year, research has previously linked social media obsessions with heightened risks of depression, sadness, loneliness, and envy – as well as a marked drop in self-esteem. With that in mind, it makes sense Instagram is making an effort to make its platform less threatening to users.

It remains to be seen if hiding likes and views will be enough, though.

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