Category Archives: Instagram

Instagram Introduced New Ways to Collect Your Data



Instagram has introduced Nametag. It is a customizable identification card that allows people to find your Instagram profile when it is scanned. Did Instagram make this because people were complaining that it was too difficult to share their Instagram name with others? I doubt it.

Nametag is something Instagram users can set up within the Instagram app. Nametag includes your Instagram username. You can personalize your Nametag by choosing other designs, colors, emojis, and selfies.

The idea is that this will encourage people to ask people they meet outside of the internet what their Instagram username is. Nametag would allow two people to scan each other’s Nametag’s and start following each other. Was it really so difficult to just tell people what your Instagram username is?

Personally, I don’t have a use for Nametag. My Instagram account is private because I found my Instagram photos on other people’s websites and it bothered me. I’m incredibly picky about who I will let follow me on Instagram.

Nametag sounds like a fun little gimmick that could result in more user interaction on Instagram. That’s one thing that social media companies want – to encourage users to engage with their social media site more often.

In addition, Instagram is testing something called School Communities. College and university students, as well as recent grads, can opt-in to their School Community. Doing so allows a user to add a profile that lists their university, class year, major, sports team and sorority.

Those who are in the same university can click on a directory listing all the people who have attended it. In other words, School Communities is a way for Instagram to create a database of college students.

School Communities also appears to also be designed to encourage users to interact more on Instagram. In addition, it is a sneaky way to get users to give more of their personal data to Instagram (and therefore, Facebook). Beware of the fun features that social media companies create. They may have an ulterior motive.


Instagram’s Questions Sticker is not Anonymous



Instagram recently introduced the Questions Sticker. It functions something like Ask.fm and Formspring. It turns out that Instagram’s Questions Sticker is not anonymous.

The Questions Sticker is an interactive feature in Instagram Stories that lets your friends submit questions for you to answer. Instagram describes it as “a fun new way to start conversations with your friends so you can get to know each other better.” Two other features, the polling sticker, and the emoji slider, are also designed to help people get to know their friends better on Instagram.

To use the Questions Sticker, you first need to take a photo or video. The example on the Instagram blog shows a photo with a Questions Sticker that says “waiting for the bus… ask me questions!” Your friends can see the sticker and tap it to reply (as many times as they like).

You can find your friends’ responses in your story’s viewers list. Tap any question they’ve asked to create a new story where you can answer it, and the question you’re answering will appear on your story for context. Though you’re able to see who submitted each response in your viewers list where it’s private, when you share that response in your story, your friend’s photo and username will not be shown.

The Guardian reported that Instagram’s Questions Sticker is not anonymous. You will be able to see who submitted each response to your questions.

The part that seems to be confusing people is that when someone shares a response publicly, the username of the person who made that response is removed. The Guardian notes that the way Instagram explained how the Questions Sticker functioned was unclear. The result is there are some very embarrassed people out there who thought their mean words could not be connected to them.


Instagram will Filter Bullying Comments



Instagram announced on May 1, 2018, that they will filter bullying comments intended to harass or upset people in the Instagram community. I learned about this when my phone notified me that there was an Instagram update.

Starting today, Instagram will filter bullying comments intended to harass or upset people in the Instagram community. To be clear: we don’t tolerate bullying on Instagram. Our Community Guidelines have always prohibited bullying on our platform, and I’m proud to announce this next step in our ongoing commitment to keeping Instagram an inclusive, supportive place for all voices.

In the blog post about Instagram’s decision to filter bullying comments, Instagram points out their offensive content filter (which was announced last year.) That filter automatically hides toxic and divisive comments, particularly those aimed at at-risk groups.

The new bullying comments filter hides comments containing attacks on a person’s appearance or character, as well as threats to a person’s well-being or health. The bullying filter is on for the Instagram global community. Those who don’t want to use the bullying comments filter can disable it in the Comment Controls center in the Instagram app.

The bullying comments filter will also alert Instagram to repeated problems so they can take action. In addition, Instagram is expanding their policies to guard against bullying young public figures on their platform. In the blog post, Instagram states “Protecting our youngest community members is crucial to helping them feel comfortable to express who they are and what they care about.”


Organize Your Saved Posts into Collections on Instagram



Instagram introduced its bookmarking tool in December of 2016. Now, Instagram is adding a way for people to organize the bookmarked posts that they saved into collections. This feature reminds me of Pinterest boards. Both allow users to gather up a selection of things that other users have posted, that fit one theme or topic, in one easy to view place.

On Instagram, bookmarking allows people to save photos that other people have posted. There is a little bookmark shaped icon underneath each Instagram photo. Press and hold the bookmark, and you automatically save that photo.

Collections take this simple process one step further. You can now create as many collections on Instagram as you like, and give each their own title. Sort your bookmarks into the appropriate collection. You can now go back and view a specific collection any time you want, without having to sort through your bookmarks to find them.

Instagram says that, since they introduced the ability to save posts, 46% of Instagrammers have saved at least one post. People save posts that they want to see again. For example, Instagram notes that some people are saving photos that will help them plan their next trip, or to remind them of something they want to purchase. Of course, there will always be people who save photos and videos of animals.

The collections you make on Instagram are private (just like your saved posts are). No one can see them except for you. The update that allows you to make collections in Instagram is available for iOS and Android as part of Instagram 10.16.

 


Instagram is Adding Comment Control Features



Instagram is updating its comment control features on the Instagram app. The purpose is to make Instagram a welcoming place for everyone and to keep it a positive place for self-expression.

Instagram is owned by Facebook. It appears that the comments on Instagram are starting to become more like the comments on Facebook. That means that people are communicating on Instagram through the comments left on photos.

Unfortunately, it also means that some people are leaving mean comments on other people’s posts.  Instagram has already launched the ability to filter comments based on keywords. Soon, Instagram will add a way to turn off comments.

Sometimes there may be moments when you want to let your post stand on its own. Previously, this was only available for a small number of accounts. In a few weeks, it will be available to everyone.

To turn off comments, you need to use the Instagram app, go into the “Advanced Settings” before you post and select “Turn Off Commenting”. You can turn comments back on later if you want to. Instagram is also adding the ability to like comments by tapping a heart icon next to any comment.

Another change is coming to private accounts. People who have private accounts have to approve each follower. In the past, there was no simple way to undo that decision without blocking them. Soon, Instagram users who have private accounts will have the ability to remove followers. The person will not be notified that you have removed them as a follower.

Instagram is also allowing anonymous reporting for self-injury posts. If you believe that someone you care about may be thinking of hurting themselves, you can report it anonymously and Instagram will connect your friend to organizations that offer help. Instagram has teams working 24 hours a day, seven day a week, around the clock to review those reports.


Ferrari Arrives On Instagram



Ferrari LogoWhen it comes to objects of desire, a Ferrari is close to the top of many a wish list. The gorgeous shapes, the fabulous sound and rich racing history are all part of the aura surrounding the Italian company and the famous prancing horse. It’s perhaps a little surprising then that it’s taken this long for Ferrari to join Instagram and show off the red supercars in all their glory.

Social media isn’t new to Ferrari, with active accounts on both Facebook and Twitter, but Instagram is the obvious platform for pictures and now, sound. As well as the visual treats, Ferrari have recorded aural delights to get more senses involved. It’s all very current too with the first set of photos fresh from last weekend’s Mille Miglia.

Lined up. #Ferrari #RossoFerrari #MilleMiglia

A photo posted by Ferrari (@ferrari) on

Follow @Ferrari to keep those dreams alive!


Instagram to Manage Your Feed for You



instagram logoIt’s a trend that seems unstoppable. More and more, social media services are implementing algorithms that automatically manage what you do and don’t see. First it was Facebook, then Twitter. Now, Instagram is doing the same thing. Earlier this month, the photo-sharing service posted this on its blog:

You may be surprised to learn that people miss on average 70 percent of their feeds. As Instagram has grown, it’s become harder to keep up with all the photos and videos people share. This means you often don’t see the posts you might care about the most.

To improve your experience, your feed will soon be ordered to show the moments we believe you will care about the most.

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.

If your favorite musician shares a video from last night’s concert, it will be waiting for you when you wake up, no matter how many accounts you follow or what time zone you live in. And when your best friend posts a photo of her new puppy, you won’t miss it.

We’re going to take time to get this right and listen to your feedback along the way. You’ll see this new experience in the coming months.

This change has been met with outrage from the Instagram community. There’s a Change.org petition that’s demanding to Keep Instagram Chronological. The petition has racked up over 280,000 signatures so far.

Every time a social network announces a change like this, it’s met with a serious amount of brushback from its user base. And then, a month or so after the change is implemented, everyone quiets down and just goes along with it. The only real way a user can potentially impact these monolithic networks is to leave and never come back. But few are willing to make that commitment.

If you’re an Instagram user and you appreciate the natural, chronological feed you’ve always had, enjoy it while it lasts. This change is expected to take hold in the next few months and it’s unlikely it’ll ever go back.