In an attempt to focus on the quality of content rather than the number of likes it creates, Instagram has announced it will trial hiding the like count on photos and view count on videos.
The trial will allow users that post the content to see the likes on their photos, yet the number will not be visible to the public.
According to Instagram, the purpose of the test is to improve the self-esteem of its users.
The first set of trials will begin in Canada this week, and may go global.
An Instagram spokesperson said: “We are testing this because we want your followers to focus on the photos and videos you share, not how many likes they get.”
The move from the Facebook-owned app comes after increasing research into the damage social media causes to users’ mental health, especially young people.
A screenshot released by Instagram shows what the change will look like under the trial. Users who post the photo will see the like-count, but others will not.
Speaking at Facebook’s annual software developer conference, head of Instagram Adam Mosseri said the social media app hoped the potential change would make the platform a “less pressurised environment”.
He said: “We want people to worry a little bit less about how many likes they’re getting on Instagram and spend a bit more time connecting with the people that they care about,” he said.
The trial will only affect Canadian users for the time being, but Instagram has said it may expand the trial to other countries.