Facebook might start hiding ‘Like’ counts for posts

Facebook like counts

Reverse engineering expert Jane Manchun Wong noticed the "like" count was hidden from her own posts, writing; "I observed that Facebook has recently begun prototyping this hidden like/reaction count feature in their Android app by reverse-engineering the app and playing with the code underneath". That means only you will be able to see your posts' like counts, just like the feature works on Instagram.

According to a study by UCLA published in Psychological Science in 2016, social media likes activated the rewards circuits of a teenager's brain, which is the same part that gets triggered by chocolate.

Facebook later confirmed to TechCrunch that the company is considering the removal of like counts, though it's not started testing the feature with users just yet.

The total like/reaction count on a post can also induce feelings of anxiety for users creating the content, and paves the way for a "depressing popularity contest", Wong said.

More news: Hurricane Dorian grows in size, coasting along Florida tonight

Instagram rolled out this option earlier this year in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, Italy, Japan and New Zealand. The feature effectively hides the number of likes a post gets from the public, but makes it visible to the one who made the post. However, some research has found that the same function can also be bad for people's mental health when users substitute real-life interactions with friends and family with superficial Facebook likes.

The prospect is likely being explored in a bid to help prevent envy, influence, and self-censorship among the users who frequent the platform. However, the social network has not officially started testing as of yet. We know the platform tests a lot of different features and not all of them make it through to a user wide update.

Facebook has announced the rollout of lead generation in Messenger with a new lead generation template in Ads Manager.

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