On Friday, the company made an announcement stating that Mark Zuckerberg’s Instagram and Threads will cease recommending political content on their social media platforms. In an effort to regulate the national conversation, Zuckerberg has taken a step further by attempting to reduce the visibility of the widely followed Breitbart News Instagram account.
“If you decide to follow accounts that post political content, we don’t want to get between you and their posts, but we also don’t want to proactively recommend political content from accounts you don’t follow,” Instagram announced in a Friday press release.
The Meta-owned social media platform suggested that this change is being made because, “We want Instagram and Threads to be a great experience for everyone.”
Instagram tried to further explain that the change is somehow just an addition to “our existing approach to how we treat political content.”
“We don’t proactively recommend content about politics on recommendation surfaces across Instagram and Threads,” the company said. “If you still want these posts recommended to you, you will have a control to see them.”
Explore, Reels, In-Feed Recommendations, and Suggested Users are the specific areas within Instagram that will be impacted by this modification, as stated by the social media platform. However, it is important to note that this change will not alter the way users receive content from accounts they have personally selected to follow.
“If political content — potentially related to things like laws, elections, or social topics — is posted by an account that is not eligible to be recommended, that account’s content can still reach their followers in Feed and Stories,” Instagram explained.
They also stated that professional accounts can “check their eligibility to be recommended based on whether they recently posted political content,” and are encouraged to “edit or remove recent posts, request a review if they disagree with our decision, or stop posting this type of content for a period of time,” if they want to be “eligible” for recommendation again.
Instagram stated that individuals who wish to view political content on their recommendations will need to activate a control on their account to enable its visibility. Furthermore, the company mentioned that a similar control will be introduced for Facebook in the future.