Kylie Jenner, the reality-show celebrity who is the most followed woman on Instagram, reposted a critique of the app’s redesign that asked it to “stop trying to be TikTok”.
“PLEASEEEEEEE,” Jenner commented. Soon after, her famous sister and co-star Kim Kardashian weighed in, sharing the same post with a “PRETTY PLEASE” comment.
Instagram owner Meta Platforms has changed that app and Facebook to be more like ByteDance’s TikTok, prioritising short-form videos and an algorithm that suggests content to users that they aren’t already following. Some users have protested the change, saying they want to see the posts they have signed up for, not random entertainment.
“Make Instagram Instagram again,” the complaint, originally from the account @illumitati, says. “I just want to see cute photos of my friends.”
Jenner’s opinion is closely followed because of her influence on social media platforms. On Instagram, she has 360 million followers, while Kardashian has 326 million. In 2018, Jenner’s tweet criticising Snapchat caused the parent company Snap to lose US$1.3-billion in market value in a day.
But members of the Kardashian-Jenner family also rely heavily on Instagram for sales of merchandise such as makeup and clothing. Instagram’s algorithm change could make it harder for those who are already famous to keep being seen by their followers, as the company prioritises elevating new voices. — Sarah Frier, (c) 2022 Bloomberg LP