Today, Instagram has rolled out yet another update. Surely, throughout your workday, you'll hear blips and buzzes of "How can I see someone's Instagram likes?" and "Ugh, more changes," and "Sweet, a new update!" and "What now?!". Because the beloved app/life force has been making so many changes recently, there's an air of uncertainty. Do we love all the improvements? Do they make our lives easier? Do they enhance our experience with the app? Or do they confuse us? It might take yet a few more updates for us to be sure of how we feel — though personally, I find that each addition to the algorithm gives us more reason to love and obsess over the app.
But in the meantime, while you pontificate on how you feel about all the Instagram updates, do feast your eyes on today's latest: Instagram has introduced a new feature that allows you to see which of your friends have liked photos in your feed. In the past, if you wanted to know if your bestie liked the same picture of rainbow mac and cheese that your favorite food blog posted, you'd have to tap on the number of likes and scroll through sometimes thousands of users before you could confirm that yes, your bestie did indeed like the rainbow mac and cheese. Now, perhaps to create a similar sense of community akin to Facebook, Instagram will let your see your friends who liked the photo on a list below the photo and before the total number of likes. If you haven't noticed already, it looks like this:
Basically, updates like this help Instagram remain a place where friends feel comfortable communicating with each other in the comment section. They want it to be a safe place where you can make friends. And they want it to be a place where you can stay up to date with what your friends are into. So really, they're just trying to make it more of a personal experience where you can still get a sense of a community, despite the fact that you're probably following more brands and celebrities than friends. It's their way of balancing out the blog factor and the social factor: we can have our cake and eat it, too.
During a time when Instagram users are trying to steer the app into a more business-central place — what's the difference between your news feed and a magazine at this point? — it's nice to know that the Instagram programmers will be continuing to build up the interpersonal experience to keep the app from becoming too isolated of an experience. Head to the app store and update the app today, and enjoy knowing that your internet crush likes watching videos of baby sloths eat vegetables, too.
Image: Unsplash; Hayley Saltzman/Bustle