Private Instagram Story likes aren’t going to show up as a DM in someone’s inbox, as of yesterday. Get the full details here!

Head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri took to Twitter yesterday (14th Feb) to announce an update to the popular photo and video-sharing platform. No strangers to change, Instagram recently began testing paid subscriber accounts, as well as increasing the time limit on Stories. Many of its recent updates have been in relation to Reels, which is the platform’s answer to TikTok. With TikTok being Instagram’s main competitor, the platform has been taking action to fiercely contend with the company. Developing Reels, by upping the time limit, is just one of the many ways they have done this.

Now, Instagram is introducing a change that is much less focussed on competition or video content, specifically.

Instagram Story Likes

In a video where Mosseri wished everyone a happy Valentine’s Day, he also introduced a new heart icon. He explained that, “as you go through Stories, between send message and that little paper airplane, there’ll be a heart icon.”

Tapping on this new heart icon will send the author of that Story a like. Before this, any reaction to a Story, whether it was an emoji or full-blown message, would go straight to the author’s DMs. New Instagram Story likes will show up in the viewer sheet, next to the senders profile picture, and not in your DM thread with them.

Mosseri shed light on the thinking behind this update. Besides avoiding the cluttering up of users’ messages, Instagram wants to enable people to express more support for each other. He highlights in the video that messaging is a key priority for the platform this year. So, not only is Instagram vying for top spot as a short-form video sharing platform, is it also looking to knock other messaging services off their perches?