Everything you need to know about those Instagram timeline changes

Instagram has been a hot topic on social media in recent days, as pockets of users began to spot changes the picture-sharing site first announced earlier this month.

A re-ordering of user timelines so that posts no longer appear in reverse chronological order – with the newest at the top – was confirmed to be in testing.

(Lauren Hurley/PA)

As the first users began seeing the new experience appear on their versions of the app, concerns grew over the format, leading to minor meltdowns in some cases and even an official response from Instagram.

Here’s everything you need to know.

Timelines will change, but not yet

(Rui Vieira/PA)

Instagram has said that its research shows users miss up to 70% of what appears on their timeline simply because it’s hard to keep up. That’s why it wants to make the change.

In essence, this will involve an algorithm change that puts the posts Instagram thinks are most important to you at the top of your feed. This will be determined by a number of factors, including how often you visit that profile, like their photos and your relationship with that person/account.

The change will be steady

(Lynne Cameron/PA)

When first announcing the switch, Instagram itself acknowledged that this was a pretty big change and so would make sure to “take time to get this right and listen to your feedback along the way”.

In the wake of outcry over the weekend as some of the first accounts were introduced to the change, Instagram reiterated that this isn’t the end of the linear feed just yet.

But those who have seen it don’t like it

As murmurs of the change began to build over the weekend, many users panicked and sought to find ways to ensure their feed didn’t change at all.

This led to the hashtag #turnmeon trending, requesting users enable notifications on every account they follow to partly recreate that sense of seeing the newest posts firsts. Many used posts to Instagram to highlight this idea too, ironically a move that seemed to annoy people even more.

It was this wave of posts that forced Instagram to tweet and reassure users about the changes, though the debate is still yet to completely die down.

So what happens next?

(Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP)

As the Facebook-owned site has been so keen to stress, this change is not being broadly rolled out any time soon, with a small number of testers and their feedback still the way forward.

Instagram is also likely to see the dramatic feedback so far as a big factor in how quickly they push this out.

But for now, relax. Your Instagram feed will be fine.

 

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