Everything You Need to Know About Instagram Likes Disappearing from Your Feed
Instagram has long toyed with the idea of removing "like" counts from the platform. Mental health advocates loved this idea, and influencers/brands who made their money on Instagram were worried about losing their legitimacy without likes - leading to a loss in income. The idea faded away for awhile after being tested through a limited rollout. Now Instagram has unveiled a new option that will hopefully please all parties. You can remove like counts from your feed, or you can keep them visible. It's up to you! But should you remove your like counts? How do you remove them? Let's get into it.
How to Remove Lives/Views Totals
1. Head to your profile. Tap the 3 lines in the top right corner, and then click on "Settings".
2. Click "Privacy" and then click "Posts".
3. You can toggle the option to "Hide Like and View Counts" on and off. Note that the text below the toggle states "You won't see the total number of likes and views on posts from other accounts. You can hide like counts on your own posts when you create them by going to Advanced Settings and turning on "Hide Like and View Counts on This Post." This means that when you switch this toggle on, people will still be able to see your like counts.
4. When you turn the toggle on, this is what your feed will look like. When you tap on the likes of another post, you will read the message "Only [this account] can see the total number of likes on this post."
5. You can turn off like counts on past posts you've published, and when you're publishing a new posts. For a published post, tap the three dots in the top right corner, and then tap "Hide Like Count". When you're publishing a new post, scroll down to "Advanced Settings" and then toggle on "Hide Like and View Counts on This Post".
To Hide or Not to Hide?
Now you know how to do it but ... should you hide your like counts? The answer is entirely dependent on your Instagram goals and your mental health. If you are running your own personal account, and likes have always made you feel unsure about posting what you really want to post - get rid of those like counts ASAP. This feature is a godsend for people who want to enjoy Instagram without the pressures of metrics.
If you're trying to be an influencer, it's important to leave the like counts turned on on your own posts. These metrics are essential for showing legitimacy for brand partnerships. But influencers can still turn off like counts on their feed, hopefully eliminating some of the comparison traps that are all over social media.
If you're a brand or business, it's best to keep all of your like counts turned on - especially if your metrics are good. Having high like or view counts on your content does give your brand/business some legitimacy to potential customers who land on your profile (even though these metrics aren't everything). Also, if you're searching for influencers or other brands to collaborate with, you want to have your feed like counts turned on as well so you can gauge the engagement rates of these other accounts.
We're interested to see how this new feature plays out on Instagram. It could completely change the realm of influencer marketing, or it could only change the experience for individuals trying to have a more wholesome time on social media. Only time will tell. For now, we'll be keeping our like counts on because ... social media legitimacy is kind of our thing.