Instagram and Threads to Stop Suggesting Political Posts

Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, has announced that Meta will stop promoting political content on Instagram and Threads. While users can still encounter political posts from accounts they follow, the platforms will cease to “proactively amplify” such material.

This adjustment is expected to be implemented gradually “over the next few weeks” and will affect public accounts within areas where Meta’s algorithms recommend content or posts. This includes places like Instagram’s Reels and Explore sections, and the suggested users feature on Threads.

Mosseri did not provide detailed criteria on what Meta will classify as “political.” However, a spokesperson for Meta clarified that this category would encompass topics related to elections and social issues.

Here is what the spokesperson said:

Our definition of political content is content likely to be about topics related to government or elections; for example, posts about laws, elections, or social topics. These global issues are complex and dynamic, which means this definition will evolve as we continue to engage with the people and communities who use our platforms and external experts to refine our approach.

Meta plans to curtail recommendations on topics it deems sensitive by default, but users interested in such content will have the option to adjust their preferences through the settings on Instagram and Threads. This update is designed not to interfere with the visibility of posts from accounts that users have actively chosen to follow.

Instagram's setting for opting opting in to political content.

This move is part of Meta’s broader strategy to minimize discussions on Threads about subjects it views as potentially contentious. The company has already been filtering out “potentially sensitive” topics from Threads’ search results, including terms related to vaccines and COVID-19.

Mosseri has made it clear that Meta aims to steer clear of promoting discussions on “politics and hard news” within the app, indicating a deliberate effort to shape the platform’s content landscape.

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