Back in July, Instagram expanded its testing of hiding like counts to a total of seven countries. Now, Facebook has confirmed that it may start testing the same on its platform. The change could come to News Feed posts and show users a few mutual friends who have like a Facebook post without a total like count.
When we asked Facebook, the company confirmed to TechCrunch that it’s considering testing removal of Like counts. However it’s not live for users yet. Facebook declined to share results from the Instagram Like hiding tests, its exact motives, or any schedule for starting testing.
Facebook’s interest in removing like counts is likely similar to what Instagram previously said was an effort to have “your followers focus on the photos and videos you share, not how many likes they get.” With Instagram’s testing, users can still see the like counts for their own posts but won’t see them for posts from others. It’s unclear if what Facebook is likely going to test will work exactly the same.
TC notes that hiding like counts may decrease self-consciousness and increase user activity. And Facebook prepping this test could be a signal that the removal of like counts for some Instagram users in Canada, Italy, Australia, and more have been postive.
Facebook wants to avoid scenarios such as “Look how many Likes they get. My life is lame in comparison” or “why even share if it’s not going to get as many Likes as her post and people will think I’m unpopular”.
Facebook is working to hide like counts, too!https://t.co/WnUrM12aZg
— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) September 2, 2019