(CNN) — Instagram announced Thursday that it will be pulling back some of its recent feature changes after facing mounting backlash from users, including members of the Kardashian family.
In recent days, Instagram has come under fire from users frustrated that the photo-sharing app is becoming too much like rival TikTok. Some users have complained that Instagram now shows a much higher proportion of recommended content from accounts they don’t follow versus posts from their friends. Instagram has also been testing full-screen posts, similar to how posts appear on TikTok.
“Based on our findings and community feedback, we’re pausing the full-screen test on Instagram so we can explore other options, and we’re temporarily lowering the number of recommendations you see in your feed so we can improve the quality of your experience.” a spokesperson for Meta, Instagram’s parent company, said in a statement Thursday.
“We recognize that changes to the app can be an adjustment, and while we believe Instagram needs to evolve as the world changes, we want to take the time to make sure we get this right,” the statement added.
Instagram boss Adam Mosseri first announced the removal of the update on Thursday in an interview with tech news outlet Platformer.
“I’m glad we took a risk, if we don’t fail from time to time, we’re not thinking big enough or bold enough,” Mosseri told the outlet. “But we definitely have to take a big step back and regroup.[Whenwe’velearnedalotwe’llcomebackwithsomekindofnewideaoriterationSowe’regoingtoworkonit”[CuandohayamosaprendidomuchovolveremosconalgúntipodeideaoiteraciónnuevaAsíquevamosatrabajarenello”
Reality moguls Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner, two of the platform’s most popular users, were among the people who publicly criticized Instagram’s “TikTokification.” Each of them shared a viral post calling for “Make Instagram Instagram Again.” Jenner, in particular, has previously had a strong influence in the social media industry: Snapchat’s shares fell after she criticized a 2018 redesign of the app.
Like other social platforms, Instagram has increasingly tried to copy features from TikTok in an effort to compete with its fast-growing rival. In the case of Instagram, however, that has meant moving from being photo-focused to video-centric. In 2020, Instagram launched Reels, a short-form video feature similar to TikTok.
“We’re going to continue to support photos, they’re part of our legacy,” Mosseri said in a video shared on Instagram Tuesday, defending the various updates to the platform. “That said, I have to be honest: I think more and more of Instagram is going to turn to video over time.” He acknowledged, however, that testing of the full-screen video feature is “not good yet” and has only been rolled out to a small percentage of users.