Another major change is limiting the options advertisers will have to target ads to teenagers. In the coming weeks, advertisers will be able to target ads based on only their age, gender, and location. Previously available targeting options, like those based on interests or their activity on other apps and websites, will no longer be available to advertisers. This will be applicable across Instagram, Facebook and Messenger.
The company said this move was following recommendations from its youth advocates who said young people may not be well equipped to make decisions on opting out of these interest or activity-based ads.
“When young people turn 18, we’ll notify them about targeting options that advertisers can now use to reach them and the tools we provide to them to control their ad experience. This is a work in progress and we’ll have more to share in time,” the company said in a blogpost.
Apart from this, Instagram said it has developed new technology to identify accounts that have shown “potentially suspicious behavior”, including those that have been recently blocked or reported by other teenage users. Once identified, the app will not show young people’s accounts in Explore, Reels or suggested accounts to these adults.
“If they find young people’s accounts by searching for their usernames, they won’t be able to follow them. They also won’t be able to see comments from young people on other people’s posts, nor will they be able to leave comments on young people’s posts,” the company said.
This will be initially rolled out in the United States, Australia, France, the United Kingdom, and Japan, with plans to expand to other markets soon.