Instagram is revisiting recent changes made on its social networking service, including an expanded focus on videos, like Reels, and recommended posts, after a pushback from users and popular celebrities.
Kylie Jenner and Kim Kardashian shared a post with hundreds of millions of their followers calling for Instagram to stop “trying to be TikTok.” The sisters, and mega influencers, have a combined Instagram following of 686 million users.
Instagram user Karen Dekker, who also uses Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, said she’s been on Instagram less because of the recent changes.
“I manage my company’s social accounts in addition to my own personal account, and I’ve noticed the change on my personal account more,” she said. “I don’t hate Reels, but if I wanted the experience of watching everything in video format, I’d sign up for TikTok.”
Dekker was among several Instagram users who responded to a Denver Post request to comment on the changes.
Jules Marie, a social media marketing specialist in Westcliffe, said that her clients are struggling with the changes.
“Reach, impressions, views, engagement — all metrics have gone down,” she said.
Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri said on Twitter that his app has heard the concerns, that it is not adverse to readjusting and it will not abandon some of the features, including use of photos, that attracted core and dedicated users.
“There’s a lot going on on Instagram right now. We’re experimenting with a number of different changes to the app, so we’re hearing a lot of concerns from all of you,” Mosseri said.
He described some of the changes, including a full screen feed, as a test.
While Instagram will remain committed to photos, video is the future, Mosseri said. “Instagram is going to become video over time.”
Recommendations on Instagram should allow users to discover new and interesting things that they perhaps didn’t even know existed, Mosseri said.
“Now, if you’re seeing things on your feed that are recommendations that you are not interested in, that means we are doing a bad job ranking, and we need to improve.”
Recommendations help “small creators” grow and reach wider audiences, he said.
Instagram will evolve, Mosseri said, and he invited users to share their thoughts and concerns in comments.
Nora Lydon told the Post that she’s been spending more time Facebook and less time on Instagram because of the changes.
“I am no longer seeing posts from my actual friends in my feed at all. It was scarce before but now it is slim to none. All I see are reels, videos and memes. Most of the time from people I don’t even follow. All I want to see is what my actual friends are doing,” Lydon said. “I want to see what my [girlfriends] did last weekend.”
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