Instagram, Threads to Stop Promoting Political Content

Instagram and Threads will no longer suggest political content to their users, as stated by Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram. Despite this, users will continue to see political posts from accounts they are following, but the platforms will no longer actively promote such content. This modification, which will be implemented gradually in the coming weeks, applies to public accounts in regions where Meta’s recommendation algorithms suggest content or posts, including on Instagram’s Reels and Explore, and recommended users on Threads. Further details about how Meta will classify “political content” were not provided by Mosseri. A representative from Meta however highlighted, the definition would encompass election-related topics and social matters. The representative further added, the interpretation of political content is a constantly evolving process and would continue to be modified as they interact more with the public and experts to refine their strategy. As part of its new approach, Meta will, by default, limit the suggestion of content pertaining to these topics. However, users interested in seeing such topics can opt-in via settings on Instagram and Threads. The company reiterated that this update will not impact the way users view posts from accounts they actively follow. Mosseri added that their objective is to maintain the option for people to engage with political content, while also respecting each individual’s preference for such content. In its latest stance, Meta aims to dissuade Threads users from discussing topics it deems potentially controversial. Specific “sensitive” subjects, such as those related to vaccines and COVID-19, are blocked from search results on Threads. Mosseri has also previously expressed Meta’s lack of intention to promote posts related to politics and hard news on the platform. However, this step may invite criticism from users and content creators who believe Meta is unfairly stifling certain types of content. In response to these concerns, Meta mentioned that individuals with professional accounts on Instagram can utilize the “account status” feature to verify if their posts are currently deemed suitable for recommendations.