Instagram is rolling back changes after its users lash out. Here’s What You Should Know

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Noticed something different on Instagram? Many of its high profile users have and they hate it.

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Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, said on Thursday that the company plans to reverse several changes it has made to the social media platform following outrage from some of its biggest users, including Kylie Jenner and Kim Kardashian.

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“I’m glad we took the risk – if we don’t fail from time to time, then we don’t think big enough or bold enough.” Mosseri spoke about this in an interview with the technical bulletin Platformer.. “But we definitely need to take a big step back and regroup.”

Changes like this on Instagram aren’t going away anytime soon, though. Here’s everything you need to know about Instagram clutter and what it means for how you use the platform.

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What changes has Instagram made?

Instagram’s changes focus on two areas: video popularity and the algorithm that determines what you’re viewing.

In the early days of Instagram, photos dominated the app. The user’s biggest question is whether this photo of their unusual food needs a sepia filter.

Video gradually took over, starting with the ability to add video clips as a post to your profile, and then introducing new tools such as Reels (borrowed from TikTok) and Stories (borrowed from Snapchat).

“We’re not just a square photo-sharing app anymore,” Mosseri said in an Instagram video last year.

Instagram has also changed the content it shows you. This is slightly less from the people you follow and more from the accounts the Instagram algorithm thinks you’ll like.

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Why does this sound familiar?

You may remember the phrase “back to video.” It chronicled the plight of media publishers relying on the influence of social networking sites such as Facebook, Snapchat and YouTube to focus more on video to engage the audience.

Meanwhile, user battles against social media algorithms are not new. Let’s take Twitter for example. By default, Twitter will show you a list of the top tweets in your feed, mostly from followers, but sometimes from users you don’t follow. You can click the icon at the top of the screen to view these tweets in chronological order.

Why has Instagram changed?

In a word, TikTok. A new app for creating short videos, beloved by young smartphone owners, is gaining popularity. As of September last year, over 1 billion people visit TikTok every month. the company announced.

Keep in mind that Instagram didn’t just borrow from TikTok with its Reels platform. YouTube rolled out Shorts for users who wanted to share a similar short form experience.

Fun part: scroll through the shorts or videos and you’ll probably notice that a lot of the content is recycled from TikTok.

“People have a lot of options for how they want to spend their time, and apps like TikTok are growing very fast,” Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook and Instagram parent company Meta Platforms, said during a quarterly conference call in February.

How did users react?

Photographer Tati Bruning posted on Instagram last week calling for “Make Instagram Instagram Again”, garnering over 2 million likes and drawing the attention of Kylie Jenner and Kim Kardashian who shared the post on their Instagram Stories, reports The New York Times.

Bruening also created a petition on pushing Instagram to revert changes, bringing back a chronological timeline, and retuning its algorithm to focus more on photos. The petition has collected more than 233,000 signatures.

“The purpose of this petition is to highlight what consumers want from Instagram and start a conversation about the health of our favorite app,” Bruening wrote.

“If you go back to your oldest form of photography on Instagram, you will see that it has completely changed,” said Cristina Olivares, founder and CEO of The Social Butterfly Gal. during an interview with USA TODAY earlier this month. “And I think that’s why so many people go crazy, because things are changing now.”

How did the leader of Instagram react?

In a video posted Tuesday, Mosseri defended the shift, noting that Instagram users increasingly prefer videos.

“I believe more and more Instagram will become video over time,” Mosseri said in a video posted to Twitter on July 26. “We see it even if we don’t change anything.”

In response to his tweet, Instagram was condemned for trying to copy TikTok and focus on videos that its users don’t want.

“We don’t want to make a video Adam lol,” said Chrissy Teigen, who has over 38 million followers on Instagram.

Don’t get too excited though

For now, Instagram is postponing these changes, but keep in mind that Instagram changes will come.

As noted by PlatformerMosseri clarified that Instagram’s rejection of these changes is not permanent.

Meanwhile, during Meta’s Q2 earnings report on Wednesday, Zuckerberg noted an increase of more than 30% in time spent watching videos on both Facebook and Instagram.

As such, you can expect to see more content outside of your social circles on both Facebook and Instagram. Zuckerberg said that about 15% of Facebook content and a little more on Instagram are recommended by their algorithm from accounts that users don’t follow. These numbers are expected to double by the end of next year.

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“One social trend that we see is that instead of people just interacting in comments on their feeds, most people find interesting content in their feeds, then send that content to friends and interact there,” Zuckerberg said. “And that creates this flywheel of discoveries and then social connections and then inspires those people to create more content.”

Follow Brett Molina on Twitter: @brettmolina23.

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