SAN FRANCISCO – Instagram users could soon notice something different in their feeds: Instead of showing users the most recent posts first, the mobile photo-sharing app says it will give higher priority to posts that each user is likely to care about most.
If that sounds familiar, it’s because that’s how Facebook decides what to show users of its online social network. Facebook, which owns Instagram, has long used a complex formula to emphasize items it hopes will be “relevant” to each user, based on factors like whether the post came from a close friend or how the user responded to similar posts.
“You may be surprised to learn that people miss on average 70 percent of their feeds,” read a company blog post explaining the change. “To improve your experience, your feed will soon be ordered to show the moments we believe you will care about the most.”
Instagram had previously acted more like rival Twitter, showing every post in reverse chronological order. But it says users were missing some older posts they might have wanted to see.
“The order of photos and videos in your feed will be based on the likelihood you’ll be interested in the content, your relationship with the person posting and the timeliness of the post. As we begin, we’re focusing on optimizing the order — all the posts will still be there, just in a different order,” read Instagram’s blog.
But users don’t seem to be taking too kindly to the announcement.
Shorty after the news broke, many started using the hashtag #RIPInstagram to share thoughts about the new algorithm that is expected to roll out in the coming months.
– With files from Global News tech reporter Nicole Bogart