What would Instagram be like if people couldn’t see how many likes fellow users’ posts receive?
Less competitive, less pressurized and more personal, Instagram surmises.
The social media platform, which began testing that theory in May in Canada, this week expanded the experiment to include Instagram users in six more countries. As part of the test, users in Australia, Brazil, Ireland, Italy, Japan and New Zealand will no longer be able to see the counts of likes and video views on other users’ posts.
They will still be able to see who liked someone else’s post or viewed their video, but there won’t be a tally. Of course, people can still do a manual count, if they want to take the time. And users will still be able to see like counts and video view counts for their own posts.
[Read more: What if Instagram Got Rid of Likes?]
“We are expanding the test to get a better sense of how the experience resonates with Instagram’s global community,” Seine Kim, a Facebook spokeswoman, said Thursday. Facebook bought Instagram in 2012.
Instagram did not share any information about what the testing with users in Canada has shown, nor would it say how long the testing will take place in each country. It is also not clear how the company is measuring the test results.
In late April, Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, announced at Facebook’s annual event for developers that the testing would begin in Canada.
“We don’t want Instagram to feel like a competition,” Mr. Mosseri said at the event. “We want people to worry a little bit less about how many likes they’re getting on Instagram and spend a bit more time connecting with the people they care about.”
On Wednesday, Mr. Mosseri announced the test’s expansion to the six additional countries on Twitter.