We all like Instagram, but should Instagram have likes?


Michelle Morgan, Staff Writer

It’s a topic that’s been subject to debate for a while: should Instagram get rid of likes? As such a widely used social media platform, pretty much anyone and everyone can get an account and start uploading their pictures and captions. It’s a great way to keep up with friends that have moved away, or even with ones you just don’t see that often. But it’s also a breeding ground of nasty comments, messages, and damaged self-esteems.

There have been numerous studies that show some of the negative impacts of social media in everyone, including teens. 145 likes on your last post versus 185 likes on the post before that. What’s the big deal? It may not be worth anything to you, but maybe it is to the girl that posted it. Maybe it’s a big deal to her because she was already self-conscious about posting that picture because she wasn’t sure others would like it. Maybe it’s a big deal to her because she hates the way she looks, and that picture was the one time she was confident in her appearance.

Is showing the number of likes even necessary? It’s not essential to the app, you don’t need the number of likes to post a picture. Sure, you can still like a post, but Instagram doesn’t have to show the number to anybody, including the person who posted the images. There’s no real benefit to knowing how many people “liked” your post, so why does Instagram still show this number to everyone?

I’m sure not everyone is a fan of getting rid of likes, which is why Instagram hasn’t gotten rid of them yet, but the company needs to think about who it would benefit if they did. They need to think about why this is such a debate to begin with: because it’s damaging lives to have likes. People are addicted to knowing how everyone else thinks of them, and Instagram supplies this addiction by keeping their likes.