As you may have recently discovered. Instagram has finally removed the likes count feature on its app. In a time and industry where ‘numbers is everything’ we wanted to find out from artists, creatives and influencers how they think this update may affect them and their business for better or for worse.
We want your friends to focus on the photos and videos you share, not how many likes they get. You can still see your own likes by tapping on the list of people who’ve liked it, but your friends will not be able to see how many likes your post has received.
— Instagram (@instagram) July 17, 2019
Tonte (@TalkwithTonte) – writer, content creator and founder of BlackBritishYT, believes that the removal of likes “encourages people to go straight for engagement rather than post things in the hope to get likes”.
“I honestly don’t think it will effect me at all, I’ve always been ahead mentally in regards to social media and what its purpose(s) is/are, and I always knew it was a product of physiological testing. Social media for me is about content, engagement and networking. Likes in my opinion don’t effect the frequency and quality of this internally. 2016 I had a feeling they would eventually get rid of the likes/views system, when I noticed the sustained psychological effect it had on some artists etc due to comparison amongst other things. Moving forward though I think its important for people to appreciate a picture/content for what it is and not the numbers, people gonna have to change that mentality, it don’t always fall on the platforms.” – TinyMan (@TINYMANMUSIC) – Artist, Musician and Host.
“I don’t think it’ll affect influencers to a large extent. Just means they’ll be a lot more reporting back to the brands from influencers to show the reach their sponsored post got etc. Also getting paid post will be something influencers actually have to seek out for instead of just waiting for brands to get in contact with them” – Wunmi Bello (@WunmiBello) – Presenter and Influencer
“I feel that the change in Instagram like shouldn’t effect any artist… because it shouldn’t stop who supports you.. Numbers will always look nice but it doesn’t dictate what/who is real.. Support is support. & if you have real support from genuine fans/supporters the change of circumstances shouldn’t change how they feel about you… Unless your an artist that just cares about how you look and not who you really are” – AdeJosh (@AdeJoshnoni) – Afrobeats Singer/Songwriter
Admittedly, likes has exposed how ‘shallow’ humans can be. Decisions are sometimes made based solely on high like counts. This doesn’t always mean that people are necessarily engaging with your content. It seems that artist and influencers alike have already clocked on to this and are very welcoming of the change and new benefits.
What are your thoughts on this? Are there any negatives to the removal of likes? Or is it good news for everyone all round?
Words by @ClubTolu