Facebook-owned Instagram is rolling out a new mode called “Restrict” globally that will let users stop people who bully them via offensive posts or abusive comments.
You can restrict someone by swiping left on a comment, through the Privacy tab in Settings, or directly on the profile of the account you intend to restrict, Instagram announced on Wednesday.
“Starting today, you can protect your account from unwanted interactions with a new feature called Restrict. Once Restrict is enabled, comments on your posts from a person you have restricted will only be visible to that person,” said the company.
You can choose to view the comment by tapping “See Comment”; approve the comment so everyone can see it, delete it or ignore it.
“You won’t receive any notifications for comments from a restricted account,” the company added.
Direct messages will automatically move to Message Request, and users will not receive notifications from a restricted account.
“You can still view the messages but the restricted account will not be able to see when you’ve read their direct messages or when you are active on Instagram. You can choose to “Unrestrict” the account and future messages will go directly to your inbox,” the company added.
Instagram is using Artificial Intelligence (AI) to detect bullying and other types of harmful content in comments, photos and videos.
Last month, Instagram announced to restrict people under age 18 from viewing posts from celebrity influencers that promote cosmetic surgery and various weight-loss products.
Certain posts will be hidden from users under age 18 while others will be removed from Instagram as well as parent company’s platform Facebook, said Instagram’s public policy manager Emma Collins.
While this strikes a chord with many, the real question remains, is Instagram as private as it claims to be?