✖ Instagram making like count unvisible, will it actually help?

It sounds quite dreamy, doesn't it? The fact that you don't have to worry about your like count anymore when you'll be posting new pictures on Instagram, eh? It's been rumoured that Instagram will test a new feature out, where the like counts are eliminated from viewers feeds.

What does this mean exactly? And how do I, in my personal point of view am feeling about that?

What is important here, is to remember that they have confirmed on testing this new feature at the moment. It's not something that will definitely be there at one point, it's a possibility but not necessarily something that'll happen right away.

According to Facebook confirmed that they're testing out eliminating the like counts from viewers feeds. "This test will keep the like counts intact, but will no longer show them to followers. With the test, only the user that shared the photo will see how many heart-clicks the photo or video garnered."

As with all user-testing, there are difficulties in this one as well. It will basically mean that when I post the picture on Instagram, only I will see how many people have liked the photo, which isn't too bad when you think about it. If you are the type of a person who doesn't give a crap about like counts. But it's important to remember that there are different types of people in the world.

imagined instagram user A
Let's say this person is the one who doesn't really care about the like counts. This type of person usually uses social media for their own fun (and really not in a business-wise). These people also tend to have their accounts hidden from the public, even though their Instagram account is private, they're still using hashtags under their posts without really realising the fact that their account is private. These are the ones who post on Instagram rarely, or often, but not at all consistently. Whenever they want and whatever they want.

imagined instagram user B
This type of person is most likely someone who is a basic Instagram user, with a public account and even though they say they don't care about the numbers, they secretly do. And when they are posting their pictures, they are often checking on how many likes the new post achieved. They don't necessarily have a business account, not necessarily know anything about the reachability of the post, or curate their hashtags in a specific way, but they still do care about the numbers. They're addicted to the fact that their posts are gaining likes.

imagined instagram user C
They have a public account, they don't give a crap about numbers and they post whatever they want and whenever they want. They're basically like the Instagram user A, but with a public account.

imagined instagram user D
This person takes Instagram as a platform that is more than a hobby for them. They tend to get creative with their pictures, they are doing hashtag searches related to their own niche, perhaps have a business account but may not necessarily grow their account on purpose. They might not have a specific goal to become the next Instagram success, they are genuinely enjoying about their hobby.

imagined instagram user E
This person takes Instagram very seriously. They have a business account to see all the stats, how many people they reach and tend to be very careful about the timings they post. They might even be bloggers, who are using their account on growing the readers of their blogs, or another place outside the actual Instagram app. Or, they don't have anything outside the app and they microblog directly on the platform. Yes, that is a thing now.

imagined instagram user F
These people influence other people. They get paid on posting, they are very consistent when it comes to creating content and they are very likely to get caught on the fact how well their posts do on specific social media platforms. Obviously, as they're probably getting paid for it.

I  could list hundreds of different user profiles there are on Instagram, but I think we've reached the right amount for the post to prove my point here. You might also have noticed that I left out the accounts that are promoting their businesses (except influencers) and the people who are on the platform behalf of another business (except bloggers).

Also, please note that these aren't any specific people. These are only profiles created quickly on my head without any specific gender, age, geolocation, or anything. These are imaginary user profiles.

Like everything, there are upsides and downsides on how "likes" are affecting people. It's been said that social media is a huge part of some mental illnesses. And I do not disagree with that.

It's been said that the like counts specifically are affecting people's mental health, however, is it because we get jealous of how many likes other people gain in their pictures or is it because we living in a society where stuff like "getting your own 15-minutes of fame" will increase our own addiction on gaining those likes?

Don't get me wrong here, I can imagine it's both. I can imagine, and I actually believe that it's the mix of both of those things. It's a difficult topic to wrap your head around it.

Likes can be considered as some sort of a drug by now, I'm not even oversaturating it. More people like our posts, more dopamine our brain develops. It's something we enjoy, it's something we begin to need, it's something we begin to imagine we need. Human psychology works that way, it gives us pleasure to see those other people like us. Whether it's something done face to face, or as simple as a click of heart on a social media platform.

And what do we do when we gain the number of good-feels we need at that very moment? We crave them more. It works the other way around as well, as when we don't get to the point where we want to, we start to feel that we've failed. And when we feel that we have failed, we get disappointed. And then we might feel disappointed in ourselves, and the cycle is created.

That's what social media is, constant dopamine hits and moments when you feel that feel-good feeling going away. It's like when you get high and you feel the effect of it drop. It's like getting drunk, feeling dizzy and happy until you get to the point when the effect is dropping and when you close your eyes the whole world feels like it's going round and round, leaving you feeling nauseous.

But how does the fact, that you will be the only person who will see your own likes stops us feeling like that? And will people still continue liking other peoples pictures, even though they don't see if anyone has liked it before? Doesn't it still leave us wondering how our posts are doing in social media? Will it help, when we have nothing to compare? Are we going to brag with our own likes on other social media platforms?

This test leaves so many questions unanswered, and I'm more than interested in where it will lead us. Although, I don't think it's a long-term solution to the spiral of madness we've gotten ourselves into fishing likes on the Internet.

But why did I create those imaginary user profiles? To make the point that there are us for multiple train cars. To make the point, that after all, we're all human and whether we got caught on how many likes our posts gain the social media can still leave us feeling like we aren't enough.

The ugly truth is that eliminating the like count visible from certain people won't stop us comparing ourselves to each other, and I believe that's what the most devious thing about social media is. And it's unfortunate, as we're all just enough, just as good and just as wonderful like everyone else on this planet. If there's anything to get out of this post, take a note on that.


  1. I’d say I’m Instagram user D!
    I try and get creative with my feed but my engagement just seems to be dropping whatever I try and do so yeah I’d be happy if Instagram really did remove the amount of likes shown. I think it will stop people comparing themselves to others and feeling like their content isn’t good enough.
    It’s so hard to tell what’s genuine and what’s not these days as well.

    Love Lozza xo

    1. But then again will it? Won't we then continue comparing our lives to others via the actual content, as pictures? It's a tough cookie to bite, but I totally get what you mean :-)

  2. Instagram is just a hobby for me. It's not a way for me to increase blog views and it's not really something I use consistently to promote. The follow-unfollow game is just too strong!

    I don't know what Instagram user I would consider myself, because it changes periodically. One week I could be all about Instagram, and the next I might only post twice a week.

    Maybe I should be paying more attention to it in order to raise my blog stats, but right now I am neither interested or in the right mind-frame to even begin.

    - Nyxie

    1. The follow unfollow game on insta is absolutely ridiculous! It takes the most fun out of it, however I think the most important thing about Instagram is the mindset you have into using it. :'D

  3. Interesting take, I think it won't help the addiction but it might make it more fair. I think more people will be inclined to judge an account at face value and genuinely like something if they like it rather than trying to play popularity games. I saw someone screenshot earlier that they already had the new trial. I guess time will tell if it works x


    1. I saw a screenshot as well! It was so cool, and weird and everything in between. But I absolutely agree with you, it might make the game a bit more fair to play for all of us. Although, while it removes the competitiviness, I don't think it'll stop us comparing ourselves into each others.

  4. Great post! I feel as though I do care about likes, from a business and creative angle. I try not to read too much into it, but it is nice to have a well-performing post. I think it's harmful to be obsessive, as some people are, but sometimes it's harmless to invest time and energy into it as a passion project. I'm interested to see how this develops! Thank you for sharing.

    1. Thank you for reading! It definitely is harmful to be obsessive, and I think that's what the developers are trying to remove from us, the possibility to be obsessive. Though, then even us ourselves shouldn't see the like counts either, if you know what I mean haha :'D

  5. I'm all for getting rid of those likes, especially since I have a son who is on the verge of being a teenager. There's so much online that I worry about him getting worked up about, especially as he is so sensitive. For kids and others like him, abolishing likes is a good start.

    Trace x |

    1. As a mum myself I absolutely understand your point of a view! Though, the times are different for our kids than it was for us, while we've been growing up amongst the technological changes and they've basically born social media on their hands. There are so many dark places in the web, and it's worrying me too as my son grows up.


© overdosed on caffeine. • Theme by Maira G.