Instagram rolls back some product changes after user backlash.
Instagram said Thursday it was reverting several recent updates to its photo-sharing app after Kylie Jenner and other celebrities joined a user backlash against the changes and slammed the platform for trying to look too much like TikTok.
Instagram said it would pause testing of full-screen photo and video posts, which the app introduced to replace its typical appearance of posts that only take up part of the screen. The app, which is owned by Meta, also said it would temporarily reduce the number of posts in user feeds recommended by its algorithm, a new feature it had tried.
TikTok, the popular Chinese video app, displays full-screen videos, most of which are recommended by its algorithm.
“We recognize that changes to the app can be an adjustment, and while we believe Instagram needs to evolve as the world changes, we want to take the time to make sure we’re doing it right,” he said. Meta said in a statement.
Technology newsletter Platformer reported earlier on Instagram’s decision to revert the changes.
Some of Instagram’s most followed users had criticized the updates. On Monday, Ms. Jenner and Kim Kardashian, her half-sister, both shared an image on Instagram that read: “Redo Instagram Instagram. (Stop trying to be tiktok, I just want to see cute pics of my friends.) Sincerely, everyone.
In response to the criticism, Instagram chief Adam Mosseri posted a video on Tuesday explaining the updates and defending the app’s move to video. He also acknowledged that some of the changes were still in the works, calling them “not good yet”.
Meta has tried to turn some of its flagship products into products that better mimic its competitors. Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive of Meta, has publicly explained how TikTok has become a formidable challenger to grabbing people’s attention and said his company needs to act quickly to keep up with viral trends and new features from these rivals.
In a call with investors on Wednesday after Meta reported its first quarterly revenue drop as a public company, Zuckerberg said Instagram’s Reels, a video product, is driving growth and engagement among people. users. He said the company plans to double the product category over time.
Mr Zuckerberg also called the shift to “algorithmic discovery” of new and suggested content, a trend that has brought TikTok huge success in putting popular videos in users’ feeds even if they are not from friends or of groups they follow.
Last week, Instagram introduced features to encourage collaboration between users on photo and video posts and announced that all videos would be shared as reels, which were launched as short video montages similar to those of Tik Tok. Zuckerberg also unveiled a feature for Facebook’s main app last week that will insert more videos and suggested content into users’ feeds, much like TikTok.