In a move to combat harassment on its platform, Instagram announced the expansion of two tools specifically targeting teenagers.

The new feature will allow them to restrict unwanted interactions more effectively, providing a safer online environment and preventing bullying from other accounts.

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Expansion of the Instagram Limits tool

The Limits feature has been adjusted so that teens can limit interactions on their posts to “Close Friends” only. This means that only comments, messages, story replies, tags, and mentions from people on the “Close Friends” list will be visible. Interactions from other accounts will be muted and will not appear in the user’s feed.

Instagram originally introduced the Limits tool in 2021 after English footballers such as Bukayo Saka, Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho suffered online harassment following England’s defeat to Italy in the Euro 2020 final. users to restrict interactions with people they follow or long-time followers.

With the new updates, the tool has been configured so that teens can better manage their online interactions. Now, accounts that are not part of the “Close Friends” group will still be able to interact with them, but these activities will be muted and will not appear publicly.

Teens will also have the option to limit interactions with recent followers — accounts that started following them in the last week or accounts that they don’t follow back.

Improvements to the Restrict feature are also on the list

Restrict feature on Instagram

In addition to the changes to the Limits tool, Instagram has also improved the Restrict feature. This feature allows users to limit interactions from specific accounts without blocking them. Comments from restricted accounts will be automatically hidden, and these accounts will not be able to tag or mention the user, giving you more control over who can interact with them.

In additional efforts to protect teens, Instagram’s parent company Meta has implemented restrictions that prevent adults from messaging teens who don’t follow them. In April, the company launched a feature that blurs nudity content in direct messages for teenagers, increasing safety in interactions.

These changes come amid increasing pressure on Meta regarding the safety of teenagers. In October last year, more than 40 US states sued the company, alleging that the design of its products negatively affects young people’s mental health. Earlier this month, the European Union launched an investigation against Facebook and Instagram over their addictive design and negative impact on the mental health of minors.

Fonte: techcrunch


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