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Facebook may soon hide 'like' counts to stop you fighting for attention

Facebook
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Facebook may soon hide 'like' counts from your friends and followers, so only you can see how well a post or picture has been received.

Prolific app researcher Jane Manchun Wong spent time reverse-engineering Facebook's Android app, and discovered code that suggests that the company may soon begin making likes and reactions private. Facebook has since confirmed to TechCrunch that it's considering implementing the feature.

If and when it arrives, other users will be able to see that a post has received some likes, but won't be shown an exact number.

A big thumbs up

Facebook is already testing a similar feature for Instagram in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Ireland and Brazil. The change is intended to make the platform less competitive and reduce bullying – something Instagram admits is a major problem.

“We hope this test will remove the pressure of how many likes a post will receive, so you can focus on sharing the things you love,” said Mia Garlick, director of public policy for Facebook and Instagram in Australia and New Zealand, when the change rolled out in July.

It seems likely that a similar test for the Facebook app would also be restricted to certain regions at first. We'll keep you updated once we know more.