Now Big Tech is trying to calm us down

Several of the biggest social media platforms are beginning to test changes that cut down on scorekeeping, discourage harassment and aim to improve users” well-being, Axios” Sara Fischer writes.

  • Why it matters:The unwinding of features such as public «like» counts could have a massive impact on the multi-billion dollar businesses of social media, including the millions of brands and creators that rely on the features.

Instagram will begin testing removal of public «like» counts for some U.S. accounts this week.

  • Instagram’s parent,Facebook, began rolling out a similar test to hide public «like» counts in Australia in September.

Social media companies for years tried to juice engagement with features like increased notification symbols, public-facing «like» counts, and brighter colors to attract users to more images.

  • Some researchers now believethat those tactics have led to an overuse in social media, and may have had a negative overall impact on users” health.

Twitter is also deploying tests to motivate users to engage more positively and cut down on harassment and bullying.

Between the lines: These efforts aren’t totally altruistic. The platforms” high-engagement environment is burning out some users.


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