Instagram is making comments easier to navigate. On August 15, Instagram launched comment threads, a new format that makes it easy to see which comments are original and which ones are responses to other comments. The new Instagram comments design began rolling out Tuesday.
With the update, users can hit the “reply” button underneath any comment and the response will appear grouped underneath the original comment.
“Comment threads help you keep track of conversations and make it easy to respond to a specific thread,” Instagram shared in a blog post. “This update will make your feed an even better place to share interests, get inspired, and connect with others.”
Before the update, hitting the reply button simply tagged the user at the beginning of the comment. Following the thread of conversations with the comments all on one level proved difficult, particularly for longer conversations or posts that sparked more than one comment thread.
The update brings Instagram’s comments closer to those of parent company Facebook’s, which has allowed nested comments on its app since around 2012. The two still remain pretty distinct, however, considering that Facebook allows for emoji responses to comments as well as for using photos, videos, and GIFs inside replies.
The move by Instagram is part of an ongoing effort on the company’s part to help users regulate the comments on their photos. Last year, the platform launched a tool designed to block comments containing specific keywords. Instagram has also been fighting against spam and offensive comments through enhanced artificial intelligence algorithms for detecting and automatically removing the offensive comments.
The update joins the platform’s continued efforts to reduce the number of “bots” or computers using fake profiles to comment on other posts in order to gain followers. Instagram has already shut down Instagress as well as several other similar botting platforms.
So will Instagram’s latest move make the comment section a friendly place? While some users already have access to the new, more organized comments, Instagram says the feature will roll out globally in the next few weeks with an update in both the App Store and Google Play.
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