Instagram now gives users the choice of how the timeline should be composed. In addition to a timeline formed by an algorithm, it becomes possible to scroll through messages chronologically. In addition, a user can choose between a timeline with all accounts that are followed and a timeline with ‘favorite’ accounts.
The social medium had been testing the new for months feeds† This meets the users’ wish to determine more for themselves what the timeline looks like.
Originally the feed chronologically, but in 2016 Instagram switched to an algorithm. Since then, the order has been determined by the user’s ‘preferences’, alternating with recommended accounts and advertising messages.
The default timeline is algorithmic. This can be adjusted by clicking ‘home page’ at the top left of the app. You can then choose from two chronological options: ‘next’, which shows messages from all following accounts, and ‘favorites’, which only presents messages from favorite accounts.
Criticism of algorithms
Twitter also switched from a chronological timeline to an algorithm in 2016, but that platform too now gives users a choice about the timeline order.
The European Commission and various civil rights organizations, among others, are critical of the algorithmic timelines of social media, because the tech companies do not disclose how the algorithms work. The European Commission has therefore long wanted users to be able to adjust their timeline.
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