Instagram’s Algorithm Is Being Gamed Organically, Here’s How

Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms in the world, second only to its parent company Facebook’s platform, and as a result of the fact that there are so many people on it and that this makes it ripe for promotion of various things, there are all kinds of ways in which people try to game the system. However, the fact of the matter is that there are a lot of checks and balances that have been put in place in order to make sure that no matter what happens it would be difficult for people to create bots and the like that would be able to game the system.

With all of that having been said and out of the way, it is important to note that there are other ways of gaming the system. Bots generate interactions and responses that are clearly inorganic which is why they are so easy to trace, but the truth of the situation is that there are other ways of doing this that are less easy to track.

This is where the new threat to the algorithm comes in. Referred to as “pods”, these are huge groups of people that are all part of messaging groups on apps such as Telegram. According to Researchers from NYU, posts are shared on these groups and as a result of the fact that there are so many people there and that the purpose of the group is to boost posts as much as possible, everyone in the group comments on and likes the post which helps increase engagement to a point where it is much higher than it would have been otherwise. The whole purpose of this is to game the system in some way, shape or form, and since this sort of engagement is technically organic it can be quite difficult for Instagram to trace.

This type of activity is referred to as reciprocity abuse, and it’s becoming a real problem for Instagram because of the fact that it is a communal effort from numerous users to make it so that posts that are not organically growing can still get organic engagement and this would make it so that cliques would form and content from people who are not part of these groups would end up getting sidelined not to mention the fact that this is the sort of thing that would make the algorithm unfairly favor other people that are not creating genuinely good content and therefore Instagram’s legitimacy would end up being in peril.

This is a unique problem that shows just how rapidly the world of tech changes and how fast tech companies need to think in order to get ahead of problems.




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