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Instagram’s secret sauce behind sorting out your feed

By: Ajaay Srinivasan, The Mobile Indian, New Delhi Last updated : June 04, 2018 6:35 pm

The popular photo-sharing social media site has let out the secret behind its recent algorithm which has worked in its favor ever since its inception in July 2016. The latest algorithm replaced the older chronological feed which displayed the latest posts at the top.
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It was July 2016 and Instagram was still growing rapidly as one of the best social platforms when the Facebook-owned company decided to ditch the popular reverse chronological algorithm and replace it with anew feed generating system. The new algorithm had been a mystery and it was only revealed recently how Instagram sorts through the content you see and manages to show you something new every time you open the app. 

 

According to TechCrunch, Instagram has come and revealed the way to provides the unique feed even if your following list were the exact same as your friend’s. To start things, Instagram gathered a few reporters to explain that the success of its new algorithm has gained users more visibility of their friends’ posts. Users are now able to see 90 percent of the posts that are shared by the accounts they follow in contrast to the mere 50 percent of posts that were visible when Instagram followed its old chronological order of sorting pictures. This remains proof as to why Instagram will not adapt to its older style of feed even if some users still keep hoping for the same. 

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Instagram has also clarified that the three main factors for the current algorithm to work are interest, recency, and relationship. These three criteria determine how Instagram builds up your feed. 

 

Interest - The machine learning integrated into the algorithm estimates the posts you might care to look depending upon your past behavioural patterns on similarly photographed content and rank them according to what matters to a user the most. 

 

Recency - Displaying newer posts over a week-old upload 

 

Relationship - Analyzing the kind of relationship you have with the people you follow, so your feed ranks posts from people higher whom you might have interacted a lot in the past by liking or commenting on their posts or getting tagged in them. 

 

The social media giant has also clarified that it keeps into check the number of times you open Instagram, how long you spend on each session and the number of people you follow. This careful and curated sorting of its feed thus makes it reasonable to not expect the old reverse chronological feed anytime in the near future. 

 

Though Instagram doesn’t favour towards people who post recently, it acknowledges that the app might swap in stories in case someone uploads a mass bunch of pictures at the same time. It has also explained that users aren’t favoured for using Instagram’s other special services like Stories or Live, nor does a business account give you any additional feed presence. 

 

While we’ve been informed that Instagram won’t offer a chronological feed anytime soon, we can rest assured that the photo-sharing app has its own set of skills that allows us to use its feed to the core. 

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Tags: Instagram Instagram algorithm

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