For my midterm, I chose to focus on Instagram. The social media platform is one I have used for years, and I love it! But recently I have been feeling like it could be improved. New features like shopping and reels feel unnecessary, and constantly being inundated with content from influencers can make people feel insecure.
To test Instagram’s user experience, I created a questionnaire. My goal was to collect data about people’s preferences with Instagram, and to hear peoples opinions about how Instagram affects their mental health through open-ended interview style questions.
The results showed that 90% of respondents used Instagram to share and like photos, as opposed to shopping and reels. 60% of respondents said Instagram is their favorite social media as well, with TikTok accounting for 30% of respondents. Additionally, every female respondent said that Instagram impacts their mental health negatively.
For my redesign, I decided that Instagram should get back to their roots as a photo sharing platform. Instead of copying competing platforms like TikTok, we should strengthen our photo sharing features by adding better in-app editing features. My redesign would do away with reels and shopping, and bring back chronological feed so users don’t miss posts from their friends.
Additionally, the redesign would aim to make Instagram a more positive place. In addition to providing an option to hide likes, my redesign would go a step further by giving an option to hide follower count and mute notifications for likes. I also would hold influencers accountable for unrealistic content by making it necessary to provide a disclaimer when content is photoshopped.