Instagram Introduces Controversial Algorithm That Brings Big Questions And Some Complaints

Instagram introduced a controversial new algorithm that has some users complaining while leaving others with questions about it. Many users aren’t happy with it, and the current trend in social media is that the major social platforms are choosing content for users rather than users choosing the content they want to see.

Inverse reported that Instagram has five major questions it needs to answer about the changes to the algorithm. The new algorithm will now choose the content a user sees first rather than showing the content in the order it is posted. It is following in the footsteps of Twitter and Facebook. Facebook has been filtering user content since 2009.

An Algorithm Based Timeline is Coming to Instagram

— Neil Patel (@neilpatel) March 20, 2016

As previously reported in Inquisitr, Instagram rolled out a new search feature for its platform. The search feature allows users to search by people, places, and hashtags. Instagram also offered an Explore feature that allowed users to find real-time events. The new features were rolled out in anticipation of Instagram adding advertising to its offerings. Users may search through their browsers to find what they are looking for although they cannot post photos to their accounts. Users may also check their profiles from a browser too.

Users took to social media to voice their opinions on the change in Instagram’s algorithm. Some users called for boycotts as well as staging protests against the changes. The first question that Instagram needs to answer is: why are they doing this?

Kevin Systrom, co-founder and chief executive of Instagram, said that users are missing the most important posts in their feeds.

“On average, people miss about 70 percent of the posts in their Instagram feed. What this is about is making sure that the 30 percent you see is the best 30 percent possible.”

Another concern for users is whether or not they can turn the new change off. Instagram often makes its changes mandatory giving users little choice as to whether they accept them or not. Twitter’s timeline can be turned on and off, and Facebook allows users to choose Top Stories or Most Recent.

Other concerns included when it would happen, which won’t be for a few more months. Market researchers are mulling the question as to whether or not this is a way for Instagram to show more ads. Many users are wondering which photos will appear first.

Econsultancy reported that there were three reasons why the change to the Instagram algorithm is a bad idea. They said that the change had really upset users so far. One user even started a petition.

The first reason they cited for the change being a bad idea is that it sacrifices user satisfaction in favor of brands getting their photos in front of others because advertisers are paying to have their images shown. Most brands will have to pay in order to be seen while major brands like National Geographic and Go-Pro won’t have to worry about being seen through advertising.

Another reason why Instagram’s changes are bad for users, according to Econsultancy, is that photos are supposed to be instant. That means being able to see photos as soon as they are posted. With the change to the algorithm, posts won’t be seen as soon as they are posted. Changing to work and look more like Facebook isn’t a good thing either. Since Facebook owns Instagram now, they really don’t have a choice.

[Photo by Pixabay]