Instagram is rolling out a new feature that helps fight bully, Instagram head Adam Mosseri declared that the social network wants to “lead the fight against online bullying.”
The social media platform announced a new effort in that daunting task: it’s rolling out globally a feature called “Restrict,” a tool it’s been testing since July.
When you “Restrict” another user, comments on your posts from that person are only visible to them, and not to other people.
Restricted users also won’t be able to see if you’re active on Instagram at any given moment or if you’ve read their direct messages.
Users can also opt to make a restricted person’s comments show up for others by approving their comments.
“The fact that Instagram is doing something is better than nothing,” said Randi Priluck, a professor and associate dean at Pace University focused on social media and mobile marketing.
“But the question is: How much will this help?”
Instagram’s reasoning for developing Restrict is that young Instagram users may be wary of blocking, unfollowing or reporting a bully because it could make the situation worse.
Blocking or unfollowing the person could also make it harder to keep tabs on the bully’s behavior.If Restrict works as intended, it could offer a way for users to protect themselves without notifying the person who is bullying them.
In addition, Instagram and its parent company Facebook (FB) have been experimenting with ways to make the social networks less toxic. One such effort is its recent tests to hide likes on Instagram and Facebook in order to reduce pressure and comparisons to other people.