Facebook and Instagram are now giving users the option to hide public "likes" on their post. While this many seem like nothing of great importance, this simple change can upend the core dynamic of how these social media platforms are used and desseminated. Social media has become a way to feed into self-esteem and these various metrics such as likes, post engagment, post reach, shares and so on are a means to gauge a person's influence.
As of the 26th May, users can now make a conscious decision on whether they would like followers to see the number of likes on their post or even see how many people liked other user's posts.
"What we heard from people and experts was that not seeing like counts was beneficial for some and annoying to others, particularly because people use like counts to get a sense of what's trending or popular, so we're giving you the choice", said Facebook.
In doing so it would automatically drive attention towards the content being shared instead of just the numericals and statistics. This call to action comes with the growing pool of thought that paying much attention to like counts and other such metrics are hazardous to one's mental wellbeing. Although this setting change has been created as an option and not by default, it will be fruiful in truly determining how many users take this step and whether or not the "why don't they like me" mania can come to an end.