Instagram Experiments with a Content Feed for ‘Meta Verified’ Accounts

Meta, the tech conglomerate behind platforms like Instagram and Facebook, is reportedly advancing its paid verification testing. The latest feature in the testing phase will allow a segment of Instagram users to modify their main and Reels feeds, enabling them to view posts exclusively from “Meta Verified” accounts.

As per some of the visuals shared, users can now tap into a new stream, reserved solely for content from Meta Verified accounts. This seems to predominantly involve profiles that have opted for verification through Meta’s subscription service, rather than the entire spectrum of verified accounts. An update from Meta further elucidated that this “Meta Verified” feed would showcase content from both the paid Meta Verified profiles as well as the traditional verified accounts.

In a recent development, Meta expanded its paid verification opportunity to brand accounts, potentially diversifying the content available in this stream. However, questions arise regarding the genuine interest of everyday users in exclusively viewing content from accounts that have shelled out for added exposure.

One possible advantage of paid verification might be to downplay the presence of bot accounts. Taking cues from another platform’s “Premium” initiative, paid accounts now garner a higher ranking in reply streams, a strategy ostensibly aimed at suppressing bot and spam accounts to bolster engagement. Yet, this elevated comment ranking seems more like an enticing strategy to encourage users to opt for the paid version of the app. While this approach hasn’t witnessed much success on the aforementioned platform, Meta’s Verified offering reportedly enjoys considerable traction. However, the rationale behind nudging users towards a Meta Verified-only feed remains ambiguous.

Several assumptions emerge:

Is it an avenue to stumble upon more brand accounts? After all, the existing algorithm already promotes content from high-engagement brands, complemented by paid advertisements.

Or is it a pathway to discover creators who pay for their content amplification? If they’re shelling out for greater visibility, does it necessarily mean they’re the best in the content creation sphere?

In essence, this stream predominantly seems to emulate a series of advertisements.

From the perspective of a Meta Verified subscriber, such a dedicated feed could simplify the discovery process for users, spotlighting their profiles specifically. The tangible value for ordinary users, however, appears somewhat nebulous. Regardless, introducing this feature could be another feather in the cap for Meta’s Verified service, potentially escalating interaction with Meta Verified profiles.

Though the selling of verification might dilute the inherent value it’s meant to represent, if brands and creators are ready to foot the bill, it could evolve into a viable revenue channel for the company.

For those already on the Meta Verified bandwagon, the effects of this experimental feature on their visibility will be intriguing to monitor. If the feature gains traction, Meta will surely broadcast the success, hoping to further boost the adoption of its Meta Verified service. However, solely based on this test, it might be prudent for users to hold off on subscribing to the program for the time being.

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