What Instagram really learned from hiding like counts 

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

In April 2019, amid growing questions about the effects of social networks on mental health, Instagram announced it would test a feed without likes. The person posting an image on the network would still see how many people had sent it a heart, but the total number of hearts would remain invisible to the public.

“It’s about young people,” Instagram chief Adam Mosseri said that November, just ahead of the test arriving in the United States. “The idea is to try and depressurize Instagram, make it less of a competition, give people more space to focus on connecting with people that they love, things that inspire them. But it’s really focused on young people.”

After more than two years of testing, today Instagram announced what it found:…

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