Instagram to Take Number of Likes Away, Creating Mixed Reactions

Changes are coming to Instagram.

The platform decided to slowly start hiding the number of likes a picture or video gets.

Their goal is to create a less toxic platform.

“They just made work harder for influencers or bloggers,” said Catherine Long, an Instagram blogger.

Catherine Long is a hair stylist who credits much of her success to Instagram.

“The first 25 years of my career I mean I was just an average hairdresser,” said Long.

Now, Long has over 200,000 followers.

Not only has her clientele increased but she gets paid to post pictures.

“Instagram opened doors worldwide. It wasn’t just the United States. It took me way farther than that,” said Long.

That’s why she’s upset about Instagram taking away the feature that shows how many likes her content gets.

“At first I was like devastated. That’s how I got noticed because one of my pictures went completely viral and it had like 26,000 likes. I won awards for just that one picture. I had a celebrity that found me because of that picture,” explained Long.

While she understands the importance of mental health, she says she doesn’t think this change will help.

However a counselor at Big Rapids Middle School is pleased to see Instagram taking action.

“A lot of times people correlate their popularity with their worth and so they feel often like if they have a certain number of likes on social media, that somehow makes them more popular,” said Sue Lenaha, the school counselor at Big Rapids Middle School.

She says the pressure of social media starts early.

“They’re very aware at a very young age of these celebrities who have followers and they want to be like them,” said Lenaha.

She has some advice for parents.

“If parents could just set some real limits for the kids like phones not allowed in the bedrooms, phones not allowed after certain time, it could be tremendously helpful for their mental health,” said Lenaha.