The Future of Mobile

Facebook trials hiding likes from users in Australia

David Murphy

Facebook is to trial hiding the number of likes and other reactions on other users’ posts in a bid to boost its users’ wellbeing. Users will still be able to see the number of likes on their own posts. The move echoes a similar trial which Facebook-owned Instagram rolled out in July. As with the Instagram pilot, Facebook’s will start in Australia, from today.

“It really is just taking that number out of the equation, so that people can focus on the quality of their interactions and the quality of the content rather than on the number of likes or reactions,” Facebook Australia director of policy, Mia Garlick, told the Australian Associated Press.

The Instagram move angered some influencers, who argued that likes are an important business metric for them.

Since launching in Australia, the Instagram trial has spread to Brazil, Canada, Ireland, Italy, Japan and New Zealand, but there is no news of an expended roll-out for the Facebook version.