The Head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri, recently took to his own Instagram and Twitter accounts to give his followers an update on the changes that we can expect to see on Instagram in the coming months. He opened his message by sharing the most major change of all – that Instagram is infact no longer a photo-sharing app. This message has come as a shock to most, but the Head of Instagram claimed that entertainment purposes were the number one reason people use their platform, and with the trend of video sharing accelerating via the use of TikTok and YouTube, Instagram needs to do more to embrace user preferences.
Changes are coming to video on Instagram 📺— Adam Mosseri 😷 (@mosseri) June 30, 2021
At Instagram we’re always trying to build new features that help you get the most out of your experience. Right now we’re focused on four key areas: Creators, Video, Shopping and Messaging. pic.twitter.com/ezFp4hfDpf
Here are the main takeaways from the update:
- Instagram is building new experiences primarily in four areas: Creators, Video, Shopping and Messaging.
- Instagram is no longer a photo-sharing app.
- Instagram is trying to lean into the current trends of video and entertainment, as a result of stiff competition from TikTok and YouTube.
While Adam has some good points, the changes don’t seem to be too well received by many creators across the platform, which you could say is almost counter-productive, given that within the video Mosseri states that the changes are being adopted in order to help creators to make a living, which is to do with the “shift in powers, from institutions to individuals, across industries”. Many influencers have clapped back, stating that if they had wanted to create video-based content, they would have made the switch to TikTok or YouTube already. Many seem prepared to jump ship, with plenty of popular influencers asking for recommendations on alternative photo-sharing apps they can move to if the proposed changes come to fruition.
Other creators feel forgotten about, with some comments reminding Instagram that still-image photographers were a big part of the reason that Instagram got off to such a successful start. Users seemingly feel the same way, with comments left on Mosseri’s video stating that they use Instagram as they enjoy and appreciate photo content and see it as a way to connect and don’t feel as though they get that experience through Reels.
In our opinion, we see all too much of these boring games of cat-and-mouse with main features offered across the major social media platforms becoming all too similar to one another – take Facebook with their Twitter-inspired ‘Threads’, for instance – so, the question we ask is if social platforms continue with this duplication of features, then where is the sense of originality and unique curb appeal that once attracted audiences to these individual platforms?
It’s a big shame to see Instagram ditch it’s photo-sharing roots; it takes a lot of time and effort to produce high-quality video content, and that’s why so many people took to Instagram to lean on their love of photography and consuming content very quickly. It’ll be interesting to see these changes take shape in the coming months, but it’s safe to say we definitely feel a little reluctant about them and if it comes down to it, we might just be on the lookout for a new photo-sharing app…