UK Markets closed

Instagram: Hugely popular post criticises app and demands it reverse controversial changes

·3-min read
 (dpa/AFP via Getty Images)
(dpa/AFP via Getty Images)

An Instagram post appears to be leading a major movement against recent changes in the app.

The picture – which has been liked around a million times at the time of publication – criticises the app for removing popular features and for trying to become like TikTok.

“MAKE INSTAGRAM INSTAGRAM AGAIN,” the post reads. “Stop trying to be TikTok I just want to see cute photos of my friends.”

It was shared by photographer Tati Bruening, who goes by @Illumitati on Instagram. But in the image she signed it “sincerely, everyone”.

The sentiment appears to be widely shared. Since it was posted, it has been liked, re-shared and commented on by some of the app’s biggest accounts.

In her post, Ms Bruening also linked out to a petition on Change.org. That has considerably fewer signatures than her post has likes – but details the objections to the changes that Instagram made recently.

It begins by asking for chronological timelines, and argues that the current algorithm feed is overcomplicated. “Back in the dawn of the app we were all living in the moment, seeing our best moments in real time,” the petition says.

It also criticises the app for “trying to be TikTok”. “We have TikTok for a reason, and let’s face it, the only reels uploaded are recycled TikToks and content that the world has already seen,” it reads.

The petition closes by asking for an algorithm that would favour photos rather than videos, and for the platform to better listen to creators.

In the replies to the viral post, other users list other criticisms of the app. One complains that their feed is “random people and not the people I actually follow”, for instance, and has been liked almost 10,000 times alone.

Much of the scorn appears to be for Instagram’s focus on short videos and its “Reels” tool, both of which appear to be an attempt to integrate TikTok’s most popular features and stop users leaving for the rival platform. Recent updates have made Reels even more present within the app, and creators have complained that they are required to make the posts if they want their content to be seen.

But users have complained about a range of other recent updates, including a new change that added content from people that they don’t follow into their feed.

Instagram’s boss Adam Mosseri, has been explicit that he sees the app as no longer a photo app, and that significant changes are planned for the way that Instagram works.

Ms Bruening’s picture’s one million likes mean it is still a long way from the most popular ever post on the site – a title held by a photo of an egg, uploaded in an attempt to break Kylie Jenner’s previous record, which has been liked more than 56 million times. But in a story post, Ms Bruening called on users to try and beat that record.

“What if we made this the most liked photo on Instagram?” she wrote. “I’m sure they would love that.”

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting