Several people have made careers on Instagram, calling themselves ‘influencers’. The number of followers their profile has, the number of likes and engagements their posts get, all determines their success. Brand endorsements and sponsorship deals are all dependant on the popularity of your profile.
When Instagram announced a few months ago that they would hide the number of ‘likes’ on each picture, Instagram influencers were left in a quandary. With their engagement levels not visible, their business would be severly hit, reported DailyMail.
Now, after the feature was rolled out, an Australian influencer found a way around this feature. The loophole was discovered by which the number of ‘likes’ can be seen’. If you access Instagram through your laptop or desktop, you can view the engagements on your post. The feature seems to have been disabled only for the mobile application.
Tammy Hembrow, founder of an athleisurewear brand, boasts of 10 million followers on Instagram. She was concered about the move when it was first announced. “What happens when Instagram gets rid of the likes?” asked a photographer as she left a nightclub in Los Angeles. “Then we'll delete Instagram from my life!” Tammy replied in anger.
Jessika Power, yet another influencer, said she was not really bothered about the new feature. She was confident that her earning potential wouldn’t be affected as her sponsors trust the data she provides them with. “It won't affect my work in any way. The likes are more like a drug to some people,” she said.
While Jessica is okay with the update, several others are not. Nasser Sultan, a personal trainer with 36,000 followers was outraged. “It is outrageous that I don't look like a celebrity now and people can't see how popular I am with my posts,” he raged.
Pia Miller has 732,000 followers. She is happy that Instagram is taking a step to make the platform about expression of art and not hunger for likes. “I want to live and raise my sons in a world where, within the realm of social media or any media platform, it becomes a form of expression not validation,” she said.
Instagram’s move, though not taken well by influencers, was a widely appreciated move. They are trying to make the platform more positively social. It can help in creating awareness about the importance of art or validation.