A new update coming to Instagram will allow users to turn the comments section under each of their posts off completely, continuing the app's anti-harrassment toolset it began introducing with a keyword moderation update in September.
Users will simply have to tap "Advanced Settings" when crafting a post and select "Turn Off Commenting," so no followers or strangers can write a comment underneath it.
Comments can be turned back on later, however, in the ellipsis menu found below a post. In the previous update, users gained the ability to filter comments out that contained specific keywords chosen to be harmful or negative by each Instagram member. Instagram said that the new comments section removal option, along with keyword filtering, are important steps in "giving you more control over your comments experience."
Liking comments is also coming soon, so users will be able to tap a heart icon next to anyone's comment to "show support" and positivity on a post. Private accounts are gaining a new feature as well, with the ability to remove followers on a case-by-case basis, without needing to completely block them. Instagram is even introducing a new system that lets users report cases of potential self-harm to the company, where a team reviews the reports and connects the individual in question to helpful organizations.
Finally, we want to continue to be a place where people can share deeply personal moments. From time to time, you may see friends struggling and in need of support. If you believe that someone you care about may be thinking about injuring themselves, you can report it anonymously, and we will connect your friend to organizations that offer help. We have teams working 24 hours a day, seven days a week, around the world to review these reports.
The company didn't make it clear when the updates would begin hitting its iOS and Android apps, but said a few of the features -- including comment liking -- will begin rolling out "in the coming weeks." Instagram is available on the iOS App Store for free. [Direct Link]