Instagram has announced additional updates on the Coronavirus related content. The company says it has taken measures to help people access accurate information, be safe and stay connected. Coronavirus related content from non-credible sources will be filtered out.
The updates include more educational materials, more additional stickers to promote accurate information. They will also launch a new browsing format with friends over video chat. Instagram will also be creating a shared story to help those practising social distancing connect with others using a stay at home sticker embed on their Instagram feed.
Also, Instagram will be removing COVID-19 accounts from the recommendations and explore sections. Only those posted by credible organizations like WHO or UNICEF will be spared. Additionally, they will downrank any content in feed and stories rated falsely by uncredited third-party fact-checkers.
“People who search for information related to the coronavirus or COVID-19 will start to see an educational message. connecting them to resources from the World Health Organization and local health ministries. We are working quickly to make this available globally over the coming weeks” according to the Instagram blog.
The efforts and policies set by Instagram will prevent people from exploiting the public health emergency. It has suspended misleading ads for products that refer to COVID-19 in ways that create urgency or guarantee cures.
“We have temporarily banned advertisements and branded content that promote certain medical supplies, including face masks. In addition, we removed the ability to search for COVID-19 related AR effects. Unless they were developed in partnership with a recognized health organization.” added the Instagram blog.
Additionally, To help people stay connected, Instagram has launched “media sharing” a new feature that will allow you to view Instagram posts together with your friends over video chat. You can start a video chat by tapping the video chat icon in the Direct inbox. Or in an existing Direct thread, then view saved, liked and suggested photos/videos by tapping the photo icon in an ongoing video chat.
Lastly, when you enable the “Stay Home” Sticker you will be able to see how others are practising social distancing.