Instagram bullying is a sensitive topic. Therefore, the image network is testing two new features: comment warnings and user restrictions. They should help to make the platform a peaceful place. But are the measures efficient enough? A comment.
“It is important to us to lead the industry’s fight against online bullying,” says Adam Mosseri. He is the head of Instagram and has spoken in an official blog post.
Mosseri wants users to feel “safe and comfortable” on the photo and video platform. And think about the whole experience on Instagram.
Specifically, it’s about comments like “You’re ugly and stupid”, which Instagram wants to put in the way of bigger things – with two new measures.
First feature against Instagram bullying: Comment warnings
The comment warnings are based on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and are intended to inform users who may just want to comment offensive before sending it.
The sender should thus have the opportunity to review his comment and withdraw. This is theoretically worthy of all honor. But who really wants to insult another user, will certainly not be deterred by a warning.
The function could at most take effect if someone writes a hurtful comment out of a bad mood – similar to a furious message that you might prefer to sleep again before submitting.
Initially, the measure is only available for English-language comments. Other languages will follow.
Second function: restrictions
As a second measure, Instagram will soon test restricting abusive users. This should allow us to protect ourselves from troublemakers.
If we restrict a user, his comments in our posts are only visible to him and to ourselves. Although we can approve the statements and make them visible to third parties again. That is our own decision.
In addition, restricted users can no longer see when we are active on Instagram and whether we have read their direct messages. This allows us to keep profiles at bay, without detracting or blocking them.
The online image would be protected
Basically, the restrictions do not sound wrong, because at least the general public does not learn about the insulting comments. A possible Shitstorm or a discriminatory discussion among the contributions would be absent. The online image would be protected.
In addition, Mosseri writes in his blog post: “Young people in our community have told us that they are reluctant to block their bully, stop following him or report him for fear that the situation may be exacerbated by this . “
This is especially true if they know their bully in real life.
Restrictions can therefore be a good approach, but do not provide a holistic solution: For anyone who is after a user, can still offend him privately. The others just do not get it. The account owner feels then but injured.
Instagram bullying is not 100 percent controllable
The image network is rightly responsible for creating a “safe environment”. And the new features can also help a little to limit Instagram bullying.
But Instagram can only fight to a certain point that bullying on the platform takes little if anything. First and foremost, it is not the network that is responsible for it, but the users themselves. In addition, the platform is much too large for that.
But Mosseri is optimistic: “In the first tests of these functions, we found that some people withdraw their comment and a less hurtful post, if they had the chance to think about it,” it says in the blog post. From how many users he speaks, remains unclear.
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