Instagram has announced new features for young people looking to take a break from the social network. According to Facebook’s Vice President of Global Affairs Nick Clegg, the platform has decided to implement a notification to distract the user if he is “obsessed” with potentially harmful content, and a pause mode that asks the user if he prefers stop viewing the feed.
Nick Clegg announced the new features for Instagram on Sunday (10). The changes, however, are not expected to arrive anytime soon for the social network: a Facebook spokesperson confirmed to The Verge that tools that ask users to “take a break” are not in the testing phase, but should reach that stage soon.
The new features were announced amid controversy that Facebook knew its photo and video app had a negative impact on the image of teenage girls. The company has suspended the children’s version of the app, Instagram Kids, in light of the leak of internal documents by former employee Frances Haugen.
Instagram will warn if user is “obsessed”
Facebook’s VP of Global Affairs gave details about the feature that warns when a user is “obsessed” with harmful content:
“We’re going to introduce something that will make a considerable difference, a tool in our systems that notices when teens are viewing the same content over and over, and when it can be toxic to their well-being, Instagram will send out a notification asking them to switch to another photo or video.”
In addition, Nick Clegg explained that Instagram will give parents more resources to track their teenagers’ activity on the network. The social network will also implement a mode called “Take a break” (or take a break, in free translation), triggered when “teenagers want to take a break from the platform”
Adam Mosseri, CEO of Instagram, unveiled the “Take a break” mode in a post last month. In it, the head of the social network gives details of the “rest” mode for users: the feature would be used to pause the activity of an account and make “the person think if that time wasted [navegando pelo Instagram] is being used properly”.
Clegg argues that Facebook’s algorithm be regulated
Asked on CNN about the amplification of profiles of extremists who invaded the Capitol on Jan. 6 by Facebook’s algorithm, Nick Clegg said he couldn’t answer “no yes or no” to that question.
However, the executive pointed out that Facebook’s algorithm could be held accountable, if necessary, by regulatory agencies so that “people can see the difference between what the system supposedly does to what it actually does.”
Last week was particularly difficult for Facebook. First, on the eve of Frances Haugen’s testimony, all the group’s networks suffered a global blackout on Monday (4): Instagram and WhatsApp — in addition to Facebook itself — were down for about 6 hours.
As early as Tuesday, Frances Haugen told the US Senate that Facebook is a threat to democracy and national security. She also cited that the social network was harmful to teenagers and called for changes to make the platform healthier for young people and children.
In a Facebook post, Mark Zuckerberg defended his social network from Haugen’s accusations. He says it’s illogical for a company that takes revenue from online ads — the platform makes most of the profit thanks to targeted advertising — to make people angry.
With information: The Verge