Say goodbye to the somewhat creepy “Following” feature on Instagram because it’s going away this week. You know the one we’re talking about. When using the app, you navigate to where you see who liked your pictures, who requested to follow you, etc. If you swipe to the left, the Following page shows up. Here, you can keep on eye on everyone you follow and see what pictures they liked, who they recently followed, and even what they commented on other pictures. A little stalkerish, even though you most likely didn’t mean for it to come off that way.
The Reason for the Change
The news comes to us right after the announcement of Instagram’s latest app called Threads. Why the change all of a sudden? Exactly what you might have guessed: real life horror stories, including spouses watching each other like scandalous pictures of friends. Of course, it doesn’t stop there, but your imagine likely knows some of the other stories.
When it first debuted in 2011, the Following tab proved to be the easiest way to find new content. Obviously, that is no longer the case, since Explorer came along. With Explorer, Instagram shows you accounts and pictures you might be interested in following based on the accounts and pictures you currently like and follow. Thus, a new era of finding new content was born. Though many changes have been made since, it still remains as one of the best places to find new accounts.
What Instagram Had to Say
“People didn’t always know that their activity is surfacing,” Vishal Shah, Instagram’s Head of Product had to say. “So you have a case where it’s not serving the use case you built it for, but it’s also causing people to be surprised when their activity is showing up.” This includes ending in heartbreak for people, friends, and couples everywhere. Not to mention ending in embarrassment. Instagram suspects that not that many people knew their activity wasn’t completely private. This means that certain likes might not have meant to be seen by the world.
Where Do We Go from Here?
The world will most likely be a better place without the following tab. It’s a wonder that we haven’t heard more horror stories than we have as it stands. Besides, following someone in real life would bring a lot of controversy, and this is basically the same idea. Rest in peace, Following tab.
What do you think of Following? Do you think Instagram should keep it, or are they right to get rid of it? Let us know!