Social Media can be addictive!! and Mark Zuckerberg agrees. Do you worry that you, or your children, spend too much time on social media? Facebook and Instagram owners have announced “new tools to help people manage their time” spent on the platforms. (Note that Facebook owns both platforms )
The tools are an activity dashboard, a daily reminder, and a new way to limit notifications. According to the content provider, the tools are as a result of collaboration and inspiration from leading mental health experts and organisations, academics Facebook’s extensive research, and feedback from its community.
The Product Management Director, Instagram, Ameet Ranadive, and Director of Research at Facebook, David Ginsberg, said, “We want the time people spend on Facebook and Instagram to be intentional, positive and inspiring. Our hope is that these tools will give people more control over the time they spend on our platforms and foster conversations between parents and teens about the online habits that are right for them.”
How to access the tools
- Go to the settings page on either app
- On Instagram, tap “Your Activity,” and on Facebook, tap “Your Time on Facebook.”
- At the top, you’ll see a dashboard showing your average time for that app on that device.
- Tap any bar to see your total time for that day.”
- However, to change or cancel the reminder, click on the “Notification Settings” to access the new “Mute Push Notifications” setting.
Why did Facebook effect these changes?
Facebook has a responsibility to help people understand how much time they spend on it’s platforms so they can better manage their experience.
“It is not just about the time people spend on Facebook and Instagram but how they spend that time. It is our responsibility to talk openly about how time online impacts people, and we take that responsibility seriously.”
“Our hope is that these tools give people more control over the time they spend on our platforms and also foster conversations between parents and teens about the online habits that are right for them,” their representative said.
Facebook has in recent months introduced a string of changes to it’s content. This also includes a major plan earlier this year to update it’s newsfeed to emphasize posts from friends and family.
This shift had prompted fears it could drive away advertisers if people spent less time on the social network.
In 2017, Mark Zuckerberg announced these changes. This was as his firm sought to respond to accusations that it encouraged addiction to its platform.
These new tools are an important first step, and we are committed to continuing our work to foster safe, kind and supportive communities for everyone,” Ranadive and Ginsberg stated.
Earlier this year, Zuckerberg said; “In 2018, we’re focusing on making sure Facebook isn’t just fun to use, but also good for people’s well-being and for society.”
Since the measures were introduced, viral videos have seen a significant drop in reach.
The plan in turn saw a 5 percent drop in time spent on Facebook in the last quarter of 2017.