First Instagram… now Facebook?
With Instagram testing hidden like amounts in several different countries, Facebook seems to be also considering the same tactic. Jane Manchun Wong, a reverse engineering expert, noticed this beta display for Likes.
As visible from this image, now instead of a Like count, Facebook now just lists “and others” next to Reactions as an indicator.
This feature from Facebook is essentially identical to Instagram’s test. Tech Crunch questioned Facebook about Wong’s finding and Facebook did confirm that they are toying with removing all Like counts under posts.
Instagram, owned by Facebook, commented on their decision to remove Like counts after they began rolling out tests in June. In an interview with CBS News, Instagram explained:
“We don’t want Instagram to be such a competition. We want it to be a place where people spend more of their energy connecting with the people that they love and the things that they care about.”
It’s very likely that Facebook has adopted a similar mentality for this decision as the competitive nature of social media continues to be heightened. However, with Facebook being the largest social media platform by far–they boast 2.4 billion active users–the backlash that Instagram received for removing like totals will shrink in comparison to the possible negative feedback Facebook might endure.
Is it worth the reactions to remove Like totals? Do you think social media competition propagates mental health issues? Let us know in the comments!