Expert weighs in on Instagram’s switch to algorithmic timelines - Metro US

Expert weighs in on Instagram’s switch to algorithmic timelines

A screen displays the Instagram logo during a presentation by co-founder Kevin Systrom as he announces the launch of a new direct image messaging service named Instagram Direct in New York December 12, 2013. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson/Files

Instagram plans to change to “algorithmic timelines” that sort posts according to users’ interests rather than listing images in chronological order — the same system that Facebook uses for its news feed.

The move has sparked controversy on social media and to a petition called “Keep Instagram Chronological”, which has already reached more than 325,000 signatures. Eliane Roest, Amsterdam-based media advisor and Instagram expert, explains what to expect from the forthcoming changes.

<p>Eliane Roest, Amsterdam-based media advisor and Instagram expert.</p>

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How will Instagram’s move affect the social network?

It will have an effect on the chronological order of the people who we follow. Most people are saying that 30 percent of posts will be affected by the move. But once you scroll down, your original feed will appear. So they’re not taking any posts away, they’re actually making things a bit better. That said, Instagram hasn’t made the move yet. It announced a coming move about a certain algorithm; but for now, they’re still testing. It’s important to remember that it will only affect what you get to see first – nothing will disappear. Most likely we’ll get to see most liked posts first. And is that so bad?

But what are the users’ reactions to the changes?

Complete panic; I was surprised by it. Users are begging people to turn on the “post notification.” Mostly these are people who don’t know a lot about Instagram.

Could the changes be canceled?

I don’t expect them to cancel it; they’re testing it now. So soon they’ll enroll the new update with an announcement.

In comparison to Facebook and Twitter, who are Instagram’s users?

It’s a more ‘social’ media. It’s about positive people inspiring each other with amazing photographs. It’s a great way to meet up with like-minded people and explore the world by looking at your screen.

What are the biggest challenges that Instagram is facing?

The biggest challenge is to keep this community happy. With the new algorithm, we’ll just have to go with the flow. But in the end we’ll still be able to share amazing shots with the rest of the world and that’s the most important thing.

How will the situation develop?

For now, the people will panic a bit more and as always we’ll adjust sooner then we think.

How will Instagram evolve in the future?

We’re going to see more brands taking over. But as long as we show the love to those who inspire, I believe we’ll still be able to control our feed within their limits. People are more flexible then we think. I still love Instagram to pieces, and they need to change a lot more before they’ll piss me off.

– ByDmitry Belyaev

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