Instagram is about to get a little less revealing by scrapping the “Following” tab that lets you see all of your friends’ strange, thirsty activity.
The “Following” tab, rolled out in March 2011, displayed the activity of users that you follow, showing the comments they made and the comments and photos they liked, as well as the people they followed. It revealed a bit more about your friends than perhaps they’d like.
Once the feature is removed from your version of Instagram, you’ll only see activity —likes, comments, and follows — on your photos and accounts.
That’s according to Buzzfeed, who got the word straight from Instagram’s head of product, Vishal Shah: “People didn’t always know that their activity is surfacing. So you have a case where it’s not serving the use case you built if for, but it’s also causing people to be surprised when their activity is showing up.”
Shah told Buzzfeed that a big reason for the decision was “simplicity.”
Buzzfeed reports the “Following” tab will begin disappearing this week, but it’s worth noting that some users have noticed its absence since early August.
A Facebook spokesperson told us via email, “We’re always working to make Instagram the best space to connect with the people and things you love. While this includes introducing new features, it also means removing old ones that may no longer be useful for our community. Starting today, we will begin removing the ‘Following’ tab, which was previously accessible by pressing the heart icon and selecting ‘Following.’ This leaves the ‘You’ tab, which will now be known as ‘Activity.'”
Indeed, the “Explore” tab has really taken over as the main way for Instagram users to find new content. Not that there wasn’t some fun (and, er, creepiness) built into lurking on all the thirsty comments and likes your pals dropped while you were away from your app.
Now, with the “Following” tab gone, snooping on your friends is going to be a little bit harder.
UPDATE: Oct. 7, 2019, 4:02 p.m. EDT Updated to include Facebook statement