Those suggested posts on Instagram aren’t going anywhere, but the app may let you have more of a say in what’s recommended to you.
On Tuesday, Instagram’s parent company Meta announced that the photo and video sharing app would be taking another step towards possibly letting you have more control over the content you see in the app. And we’re not talking about its existing Sensitive Content Control feature this time. According to Meta, Instagram is currently testing and plans to test two new ways for you to customize the kinds of content suggested to you.
Instagram is currently trying out a feature that lets you hide posts you don’t want to see on the Explore screen and essentially tells the app to stop showing them that sort of content going forward. This experimental option is known as Not Interested, and it allows you to mark more than one post in Explore as content you’re not interested in seeing.
IG also plans to test a feature that’s specifically for controlling suggested posts. This feature would allow you to hide suggested posts based on captions that contain certain keywords, emojis, phrases, or even hashtags. It’s unclear at this time when this feature will begin testing, as the announcement just says “soon.”
Interestingly, Meta’s announcement about the above experimental features was not the only thing we heard from Instagram on the topic of content recommendations. On the same day as the announcement, Head of Instagram Adam Mosseri posted a video to Twitter addressing the other side of content recommendations: creators who want their content to be featured and recommended on the app.
📣 Recommendations 📣
To create more opportunities for discovery, we’ve been adding recommendations to more places. Here are ways to be eligible for recs:
– Recommendation Guidelines
– Community Guidelines
– Public Accounts Only
— Adam Mosseri (@mosseri) August 30, 2022
Unsurprisingly, Mosseri’s video continued to emphasize Instagram’s push for more original content and a Feed that “will be largely driven by recommendations.” But just as Instagram’s pivot to video was loudly rejected by many of its users, this push for more content recommendations in Feed and elsewhere in the app also runs in stark contrast to what IG users have said that they want, which is to see less suggested posts and more posts from their actual friends and family.
And so, Mosseri’s video seems to put Meta’s announcement in a new context. It doesn’t seem like they’re just testing new features. Those features now seem like they’re a compromise between what IG users want (less content creator clutter and suggestions and more meaningful posts from people they care about) and what Meta/Instagram wants (a successful app that rivals TikTok in producing original, viral content).