Instagram head Adam Mosseri answers influencer Kusha Kapila's doubts at Facebook Fuel for India
Instagram is not just a social media platform to post pictures anymore. The decade-old platform has upgraded itself to become a marketplace for small and medium businesses, a marketing tool for brands, and a stage for creators to showcase their talents.
At the recent Facebook Fuel for India 2020 virtual event, Head of Instagram Adam Mosseri said, "At Instagram, we see ourselves as a place where we push culture forward. We focus on young people since culture always gravitates towards young people...We see a massive shift in power from organisations to individuals across industries. And creators are at the forefront of that shift."
Centring on this idea, Facebook brought together the Instagram global head and one of India's leading Instagram influencer Kusha Kapila to address some of the major questions that Instagram creators have today.
Adapting to changes
India has embraced Instagram with arms wide open. The last couple of months saw a huge spike in the number of creators who took to Instagram to unleash their talents. "We continue to focus on India as it is quickly becoming one of our most important markets worldwide," Adam says.
All the more, after the ban of TikTok, when creators were left without a platform to push their content, Instagram was quick to launch its new service — Reels.
Reels allows users to create 15-second multi-clip fun videos, along with a suite of creative tools.
Recently, Instagram introduced a bunch of other updates — reel tabs, live rooms, lifestyle, and shopping. To this, Kusha asks Adam, "Instagram has been in the midst of soul searching...Do you think Instagram is moving away from the simplicity of the platform, which drove people towards it in the first place?"
Adam says, while the team at Instagram is aware of people enjoying the platform for the simplicity that it offers, the platform acknowledges the changes that 2020 brought with itself and Instagram needed to respond to those changes accordingly.
"The world is changing quickly. And we need to adapt and be a part of the change," Adam added.
Adam and Kusha discusses monetising content on Instagram, and addressing harassment and bullying on the platform at the Facebook Fuel for India 2020
While Instagram has been helping content creators make a living through Instagram, and even servicing as a marketing tool for many businesses, it is yet to monetise content on its platform.
Adam said, "We are an important part of their (content creators') business and we take that responsibility very seriously. We focus the most on creators, small and big businesses, and retailers. Depending on the kind of business you (users) run, there are ways to leverage our platform to make money."
Having said that, in his talk with Kusha, Adam also mentioned that Instagram is working on creating a suite of services to enable creators and businesses take advantage of the different services. "There is not one solution that works for everybody," he added.
Thus, Instagram hopes to create tools within each category, over time, for various types of businesses.
Addressing bullies and harassment
With more creators taking to Instagram to express themselves, it is necessary to create a safe space for all its users. Being a public figure, or influencer makes one more prone to bullies and online harassment.
"How seriously does Instagram take bullying and harassment?" Kusha asks Adam. And how does the team segregate reports that need immediate attention from the ones that can be addressed a week later?
To this, Adam says that Instagram has launched its new feature last year — Restrict.
"Restrict allows users to approve or review comments from people one has restricted before they appear on the feed," he explains.
Additionally, now that Instagram has made some progress in the bullying front (while still having a long way to go), the team is also focusing on harassment issues.
"The most challenging part of our jobs is that we have to prioritise multiple things at the time," Adam says. However, Instagram is working on building new technology to address multiple reports at the same time.
The team has also introduced a Shadowban feature. It allows the team to take down content by users that violate Instagram's community guidelines focusing on safety, nudity and violence.
"We let you know when we take your content down. However, if too much of your content gets taken down (shadow-banned), the account also gets taken down, and we warn users about that," Adam explains.