Instagram users seem pretty miffed, as they claim that the new sensitivity filter which has been launched by the platform has been limiting the reach of what it considers to be sensitive posts. A report by The Verge claims that not one, but many creators on the service have been warning their followers about the issue, and are asking them to remove the filter while viewing their posts.
Curbing Self-Harm or Throttling Content?
The feature was launched just a few days ago, on July 20, 2021, and allows users to put caps and limits on the types of sensitive content on the Explore page on Instagram. The company has said that the aim of the filter is to bring about a reduction in the spread of posts about self-harm or other sensitive content.
As per the report, content creators are much concerned about the new filter, as they feel that the platform is not segregating between the different types of “sensitive content,” and instead, is categorising them all as one, while either limiting their reach or blocking them entirely.
This has resulted in both creators and followers facing problems floating or viewing posts, even as the firm staunchly holds that it allows for a toggle of sorts, where users have the option of both, increasing and decreasing the amount of sensitive content that they would like to view on their Explore page.
Two Sides of The Story?
In fact, a spokesperson for Instagram has also told The Verge that the new filter in no way affects the Feeds and Stories that users can access, adding that these two sections will continue to display posts made by accounts that one follows. Only Explore and IGTV have been brought under the new tool, and content which is deemed to be “sensitive” is directed by the Recommendations Guidelines on the platform.
So, all in all, the spokesperson says, the only change brought about by the sensitivity filter is that the number of sensitive posts that are floated on the Explore page for users who have set their sensitivity limit to low levels, will be reduced.
Nevertheless, many creators have still been left frustrated. Philip Miner, an artist and the name behind queer hobby magazine “Natural Pursuits” made a post on his account calling for people to create a resource page that would exist outside of the main Instagram service, and would allow people to sort its content based on their art preferences. One can’t say for sure, however, about how this idea will fare.