Instagram is taking a leaf from Facebook and finally testing an important feature when "unfollowing" someone just isn't an option. Enter the long-awaited "mute" button, which allows you to politely scrub annoying accounts from your feed without them knowing. So, what is Instagram’s mute button, and how does it work? Let's dive in.
According to a press release, the photo-sharing app is making it easier for users to curate their Instagram feeds with a brand new feature that lets you hide all of someone's posts from your feed without actually unfollowing them. Honestly, the mute button is the feature that we all need to safely navigate every awkward social situation.
I mean, I think we've all been there after a tough break-up when you're not quite ready to unfollow an ex, but you also don't want to see said ex's photos with potential new girlfriends flooding your feed. Or when that one friend posts about her life-changing yoga retreat for like the sixth day in a row, and the thought of unfollowing her and risking your friendship is starting to become more attractive by the hour.
Luckily, Instagram is here to save your relationships while letting you continue your undercover late night stalking with a new update that is set to role out "over the coming weeks," according to the press release. Accounts you "mute" won't be notified that you aren't seeing their posts, plus, you can always choose to look at their photos by viewing their profile. You'll still get DMs and be notified whenever you are tagged by that person, and you can also un-mute an account at any time.
If Instagram's new component sounds really familiar, that's because it's basically the same popular "soft-unfollow" features that are currently available on Facebook and Snapchat. Back in February 2018, Tech Crunch reported that Snapchat released a "do not disturb" update that lets you take a break from that Snap-happy friend. Meanwhile, Facebook's Snooze Button, which has been around since December 2017, lets you temporarily mute annoying friends for 30 days.
So, how does Instagram's version work? While the mute button isn't currently available, the image giant posted screenshots with instructions alongside its announcement so you can start muting away as soon as the feature is rolled out.
First, tap the right-hand corner where the three dots appear. Once you choose "mute," you can opt to only mute an account's posts or also hide the person's story as well. You can always reverse your move at any time by going back in and un-muting your friend.
Instagram’s latest announcement comes amidst a flurry of new advances that prove it is taking the app to the next level. On March 22, the social media giant revealed that it is working on a "new posts" feature for all the users who've expressed a desire for a more chronological feed. And in early April 2018, Instagram gave Apple a run for its money with the introduction of a "focus" photo update designed to snap the perfect selfie, iPhone X optional.
In addition to the mute button, Instagram also revealed that it is testing out an "All Caught Up" feature that lets you know when you've viewed all the posts and stories on your feed that have been shared within the past 48 hours. While the new update is definitely convenient, I don't necessarily want to be reminded of all the hours I've wasted scrolling through the app.
However, the introduction of the mute button has to be one of my favorite updates in-the-works. I'm looking forward to scrolling through my feed and seeing more of the photos that I actually want to see. Now, if only Instagram could bring back chronological feeds.