Meta launches opt-out setting to limit visibility of politics

It's now easier to avoid seeing political content across Instagram and Threads thanks to the new opt-out setting.

This has been rolled out to accounts following announcing the development of this feature in February via a blog post. They describe this as being an addition to their ‘existing approach' to how they treat political content.

The feature has been added to the ‘Content preferences' section under account settings on Instagram. Users can choose to toggle between ‘Limit political content from people you don't follow' and not limiting this. The default is set to the former option.

The photo-sharing app is synced to recently launched Threads so the update will apply to that platform too.

Head of Instagram Adam Mosseri took to Threads six weeks ago to update people on this new addition: “If you follow political accounts on Threads or Instagram, we want to avoid getting between you and their content.

“That said, we also don't want to proactively amplify political content from accounts you don't follow…

“Over the next few weeks we will be improving how we avoid recommending content about on recommendation surfaces – like Explore, Reels, and Suggested Users – across both Instagram and Threads…

“Our goal is to preserve the ability for people to choose to interact with political content, while respecting each person's appetite for it.”

‘People want to see less politics'

This update comes after a report on the Meta Transparency Center which directly states that people “have told us they want to see less political content.”

The team at Meta says this has prompted a refinement in their approach on Facebook and then other apps too.

For Facebook, AI systems are used to consider personalized signals to understand what is meaningful for each individual user.

Meta says this is how political content is ranked within the main Facebook feed, moving away from a ranking system based on engagement signals like how likely someone is to comment on or share content.

They've discovered that those aren't reliable indicators that the content is valuable to that specific person.

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