This Saturday post is a lil out of the blue, but I feel like the topic of social media and social media marketing is so important and relevant for all of us, so here I am going to get a little deep talking about… hidden likes. I have been waiting for this update to reach the US and now that it will officially happen, here are my thoughts!
Likes Are Going Away, And It’s Not Going To Be A Seamless Transition
Ok this a given, but let’s backtrack. Speaking in terms of just Instagram, the app has been incredibly popular for years, and little updates and changes have greatly affected “the market.” The latest official change is the invisibility of “likes.” Now users cannot publicly see the number of users who like a post. At a very basic level, I personally love this concept because so many users struggle with low self esteem and maybe eliminating the feature can amend related social issues. On the other hand, content creators use and will continue to use metrics such as likes to measure the success of their posts, and maybe this new feature will hurt that market.
But here’s the thing: as much as I want to see young people quit checking their phones every 10 minutes to see how popular they are, and as much as I want to see creators grow from pure original content, this is still unrealistic, and history shows it.
There Will Be Change, But Will It Be Good?
I worry that social media users will just adapt to this change like they adapted to so many other things. Remember when you could only post square or when Vine only let you post 6 seconds? People adapted well to those specifications and it completely changed the kinds of content you may see.
Some negative ways people may adapt to hidden likes: teens posting screenshots of the likes they can see as a way of flexing or proving something. Brands changing who they work with based on how creators perform in the new era, or creators finding unusual ways to gain exposure and more views to begin with.
But will something good happen?
Could this change the popularity of certain platforms? What about trends in content? Or will our culture find a way to remain essentially the same?