After Twitter announced that it would ban political advertising, Instagram has revealed its intention to go bullish on shopping and platforming influencers and businesses in India. The Facebook-owned social network giant hosted over 250 creators and marketers, including Priya Varrier and Mallika Dua, at an ‘Instagram Experience’ event in Mumbai on Friday.
Instagram launched its ‘Born to Instagram’ initiative to discover creators from across the country, and help them leverage the platform for business. The ‘Born to Instagram’ will roll out in 15 cities, enabling creators from big and small cities to collaborate and provide them with mentorship opportunities.
Vishal Shah, vice-president, product, Instagram, shared IPSOS India study according to which 95% of people contacted said Instagram helped them decide whether to buy a product or service. Encouraged by this, Instagram will start testing augmented reality-based shopping, first in the U.S., but no timeline has been set for an India launch.
Mr. Shah said the social network platform has recently introduced several provisions to ensure the “well-being” of its users. It is currently testing the removal of the number of likes that appear under a post. “Research shows people face a lot of pressure and competition from these likes,” Mr. Shah said.
To tackle online bullying, Instagram recently launched a ‘restrict’ feature, which protects the user’s account from unwanted interactions, without completely blocking them. “When you put a wall around your bully, you don’t know what they are doing or whether they are bullying you through someone else’s account,” he said.
In addition, Instagram is adding a comment warning, informing the user that their content may be considered offensive, giving them a chance to review their comment.