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Instagram feed sharing ban

How Instagram’s feed sharing ban could impact artists and activists

The social media platform is trialling a new feature that will disable users from sharing posts from their feed onto their stories

In a new trial, Instagram is disabling the ability to share posts from your feed on your stories, in a possible major blow to artists, small businesses, and activist groups.

The news emerged after some users received a notification that read: “Testing a change to sharing to stories. We hear from our community that they want to see fewer feed posts in stories. During this test, you won’t be able to add a feed post to your story.”

In a statement shared with Social Media Today, Instagram expanded on this alert, asserting that the test was only happening within a few select regions. “We’ve seen from research that people prefer to see original photos and videos in stories from the people they care about. The goal of our test is to better understand how people feel about this type of content, and ultimately improve the stories experience.”

Resharing feed posts in stories has become commonplace in recent months. Although some users share their own posts in their stories – meaning their followers often see the post twice – many use the feature to reshare posts from other people, namely small businesses, activist groups, and artists. The ability to reach a wider audience is hugely beneficial to these groups – particularly when it comes to spreading awareness about political or local issues.

“My stories are 80 per cent signposting to other people and resources,” activist Gina Martin said in response to the news. “I HATE THIS.”

One user took to Twitter to express her dismay, writing: “People sharing my posts to their stories is the ONLY way I have been able to grow on IG. Reels don’t help, hashtags don’t really help either.”

“This would make me use Instagram less,” one user wrote on Twitter. “I share feed posts to my stories to raise awareness of issues I care about from the accounts that focus on those issues. Or posts by illustrators I like.”

Another said: “Feed posts in stories is one of the main ways I find new content and accounts I like, and hear voices outside of my own community. Instagram could give users the option to filter those types of stories out, but getting rid of the feature is a huge mistake.”

There doesn’t appear to be much positive feedback to the possible change, so it’s likely Instagram will scrap it – just like they did when the world went into uproar over horizontal scrolling.