Technology
Danish Kapoor
Danish Kapoor

Instagram will do more to help young people fight bullying

Instagram is expanding two of its security features to increase bullying protections for teens. The company limits and restricts the ways it operates on its app to provide teens with ways to deal with potential bullies that it claims are less likely to lead to further retaliation.

With the changes, Instagram users will have the ability to “limit” post interactions to only their “close friends.” This means users will only see comments, direct messages, tags, and mentions from people on their close friends list. Other followers will still be able to interact with their posts, but these comments and messages will not be visible to others.

The company had previously introduced comment limiting as a creator-focused anti-bullying feature in 2021 in a bid to prevent the sudden flood of abuse experienced by many footballers in the UK. According to Instagram, the latest changes are aimed more at teens dealing with bullies. However, they may be hesitant to use the app's blocking feature due to fear of escalating potential conflicts.

Instagram is changing its restriction feature

Instagram is making similar changes to its “restrict” feature in cases where people are dealing with a particular bully. Users will be able to block restricted people from tagging or mentioning them. Comments from people on the restricted list will also be automatically hidden from others.

The updates come as Meta faces scrutiny over teen safety and other issues. The company was sued by dozens of states in the US last year for allegedly failing to protect its youngest users from harmful aspects of its service. Meta is constantly discussed on these and similar issues.

Danish Kapoor