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'Likes' on X now private to enhance user privacy

X's shift to ‘private likes’ is a strategic move to protect user privacy and promote a more genuine and secure interaction environment. Enabling the users to like content privately, aims to encourage more authentic engagement on the platform.

Written By: Saumya Nigam @snigam04 New Delhi Updated on: June 13, 2024 11:41 IST
'Likes' on X now private to enhance user privacy
Image Source : FILE 'Likes' on X now private to enhance user privacy

X (formerly known as Twitter) has made a significant change to its platform by making 'likes' private. The move has been taken with the aim of better protection for user privacy and enabling individuals to like posts without the fear of judgment or any backlash.

Private 'Likes' for enhanced privacy

In the new update, users could like a post on X, and it will no longer be visible to others. This change is part of a broader initiative which will enhance privacy and make the platform a safer space for interaction. 

When users will log into their accounts, a popup message will inform them about the recent development, and state: "Your Likes are now private. We are making Likes private for everyone to better protect your privacy. Liking more posts will make your 'For you'll feed better."

Visibility and interaction remain intact

Although the likes are now private, users can still see the posts they have liked. The total number of likes on a post and who liked it will only be visible to the post owner. The engineering team at X has confirmed these changes and ensured that the user will experience largely the same, with enhanced privacy.

India Tv - X Like feature

Image Source : XX Like feature

Users will also be able to continue receiving notifications which will show the like counts and other metrics for their posts. The ability to see who liked their posts remains unchanged, preserving this aspect of user interaction.

Move to private 'Likes'- Reason

Elon Musk, in an official post made on his X timeline, emphasized the importance of enabling the users to like content without the fear of being "attacked for doing so." 

This further highlights the motivation behind the move to private likes, aiming at creating a more open and judgment-free environment for users to express their preferences.

Encouraging authentic engagement

Haofei Wang, Director of Engineering at X, highlighted the potential benefits of this upgrade made on the Like feature. In his post from May, Wang stated that public likes often incentivize the wrong behaviour, as users may feel discouraged from liking content that could be controversial or edgy. 

By making ‘likes private’, X hopes to foster a more authentic engagement, where users can freely appreciate content without worrying about public perception or retaliation from trolls.

Private ‘Likes’ feature for all users

Previously, the private likes feature was only available for the X premium users, but now it is accessible to all. The move reflects the commitment of X to providing a safer and more user-friendly experience on the platform.

 

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