Instagram recently added a question and answer feature to its stories, wherein users can post a story and let their followers ask them questions. The feature is similar to ask.fm and widely-acclaimed Sarahah. Well, not completely. Unlike ask.fm and its likes, Instagram’s question and answer feature is not anonymous. What that means is, when you ask someone a question, they can see it’s you asking the question!
Instagram mislead users by saying that when their questions are shared, their usernames won’t be disclosed. Let me explain what this means:
As an example, I’ve just posted a story on my Instagram, asking my followers to “Ask me a question”. One of my friends responded to my story by asking me a question. Now, I can see that he has asked me the question, meaning there is absolutely no factor of anonymity present. I answer his question and then share the response on my story. This response, i.e. what goes on the story does not show which of my friends asked the question. In essence though, I know who asked the question and from a larger point of view, that is what leads to numerous users facing embarrassing situations in their social circles.
All users thought that the new feature will preserve the anonymity of the user asking the question but sadly that wasn’t the case. Eventually, this led to users asking others a series of really inappropriate questions. Here are a few tweets from users who fell prey to the app’s misleading feature:
Industry experts have commented that the consistent addition of new features and filters etc. by Instagram is an attempt to save their market share. As of now, users are constantly shifting from one app to another and it seems like Instagram’s parent company, Facebook, is willing to clone the features of every app that gets famous. As an example, both WhatsApp and Instagram (owned by Facebook) have cloned Snapchat’s much-acclaimed “Stories” feature. Question is, will Instagram’s new feature help in retaining its user base or will Instagram go down as another Sarahah?