Instagram one of the most popular photo sharing applications is going to launch ”high volume comment threads” allowing users to filter offensive comments or just close up the comments section. The aim of this step is to prevent online harassment.
The new option enables users to restrain comments on posts which, of course, make the account more secure.
Nicky Jackson Colaco – Instagram’s head of public policy, expresses such an opinion in a statement quoted by The Washington Post:
“Our goal is to make Instagram a friendly, fun and, most importantly, safe place for self-expression. We have slowly begun to offer accounts with high volume comment threads the option to moderate their comment experience. As we learn, we look forward to improving the comment experience for our broader community.”
Instagram is known to have its own general policies for what it considers as acceptable speech. however, the new option enables users with the liberty to decide whether they really want the comment to be displayed or not. The decision was made only a month later after launching ”comment moderation” tool for business accounts which makes it possible to block displeasing comments.
Recently Instagram has been developing a series of anti-harassment tools, a number of which are planned to be rolled out soon (in the coming weeks).
The Washington Post informs that Instagram is going to let its users create their own banned words listings, which will prevent posting of unwanted comments on their photos. Users may also have the ability to turn comments off on a photo-by-photo basis, so there will be an opportunity to disable the comments entirely.
Even though harassment on Instagram hasn’t been as much of a story as harassment on many other social networks, like Twitter, For example, the development of such tools is a really important step. Online harassment is a serious problem that any network can face sooner or later. Such modifying tools as custom banned word lists help individual users to clear up hateful and insulting comments thus having control over their own accounts.
Of course, it’s clear that creating banned terms listing on your own, rather than relying on Instagram’s own filters, is not an absolute solution to the problem. Any person who cares about stopping harassment on their photos (and mainly individuals who have already experienced any kind of harassment on social networks) —have to take some steps to prevent it. But let’s consider the importance of such tools to be there to use and the function of updating the list of banned words and phrases. It’s really a big and important step forward.
Instagram has already started testing these new features and some celebrities are involved in the process. It is likely that Taylor Swift used these new special tools to stop all those annoying snake emoji comments on her photos. Advertisers may also have turned to Instagram for this to prevent critical commenters from posting disrespectful remarks.
According to the Post, “High-volume” Instagram accounts will be the first ones to receive the anti-harassment features first. While Instagram is still figuring out whether to widely roll out the ability to disable comments or not, it is supposed that the filtering feature is going to be available in “the coming weeks”. Sounds pretty interesting!