Instagram to pause TikTok-like features in wake of complaints
Instagram will put on hold the features that users have campaigned against and complained about making the social network too much like TikTok, according to a report released in the Platformer technical bulletin on Thursday.
Famous sisters Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner were some of the loudest users to post on social media this week calling on the company to “make Instagram anew Instagram” and stop trying to be like TikTok.
The slogan emerged from a change.org petition that received over 229,000 signatures last Thursday.
“Let’s go back to our roots with Instagram and remember that the purpose of Instagram was to share pictures, for Pete’s sake,” the petition read.
Instagram’s head Adam Mosseri responded to the controversy earlier this week with a Twitter video in which he stated that the features were a work in progress, and being tested with a small number of users.
The changes included playing the short video, a full-screen display like TikTok does, and recommending messages from strangers.
“I’m glad we took a risk,” Mosseri was quoted as saying Thursday in an interview with Platformer’s Casey Newton.
“But we definitely need to take a big step back and regroup.”
“If we’re not failing every once in a while, we’re not thinking big enough or bold enough,” Mosseri said.
Mosseri argued that the switch to more video would occur even if the service did not change anything, as users increasingly share and search video excerpts.
“If you look at what people share on Instagram, which moves more and more towards the video over time,” Mosseri said.
“We will need to look at this change.”
Meta-chief Mark Zuckerberg supported this position during a conference call on Wednesday, stating that people are increasingly watching the video online.
Both Meta and Google are among the companies facing increased TikTok competition for people’s attention and have released their own versions of short-form video sharing.