Instagram Rolls Out 'Restrict' So You Can Block Hateful Comments Without Bullies Knowing

The new features will be available by the end of this year.

Cover image via Three and Instagram

Have you ever wanted to block someone on Instagram because of their continuous offensive comments?

Image for illustration purposes only.

Image via Young Post

Instagram's new feature will allow you to 'restrict' a user so their comments will only be visible to themselves

While users will know if they have been blocked on someone's Instagram, a 'restricted' user will not know that they have been restricted.

According to TIME, users can choose to make their restricted comments visible to others by approving the comment.

Restricted users also will not be able to see your active status or if you have read their direct messages.

Image via Instagram

This method of combating bullying is effective as head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri noted: "People... are reluctant to block, unfollow, or report their bully because it could escalate the situation, especially if they interact with their bully in real life".

Another feature that is in development is a pop-up that will make bullies rethink their comments

Using artificial intelligence, Instagram will alert users if their comment is considered offensive before it is posted.

According to Mosseri, "this intervention gives people a chance to reflect and undo their comment and prevents the recipient from receiving the harmful comment notification."

There is also an 'undo' button next to the comment, so users can quickly remove it.

"From early tests of this feature, we have found that it encourages some people to undo their comment and share something less hurtful once they have had a chance to reflect," Mosseri said at F8, as reported by Channel News Asia.

In 2017, a British study found that a large majority of cyberbullying happens over Instagram

These new tools are part of Instagram's ongoing efforts to fight bullying. Mosseri said in a blog post:

"We are committed to leading the industry in the fight against online bullying, and we are rethinking the whole experience of Instagram to meet that commitment."

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