If we asked you to raise your hand if you felt you spent a little too much time on Instagram than you’d be comfortable admitting, I’m sure yours wouldn't be alone in the air.
Earlier this year Ofcom announced that the average adult spends 25 hours per week online, and us Instagram junkies have a suspicion that the app is responsible for a hefy proportion of those hours.
A 2014 study even proposes that 53 per cent of adults ages 18–29 years use it every day, and as this includes us (obviously) we feel we are pretty well-versed in understanding how it works and how to navigate it. However, there are some things we’d like to clear up for good.
How do you block someone on Instagram, and what happens when you block someone?
There are a whole host of reasons why you would feel the need to block someone on Instagram: you have a weird stalker who comments strange things on everything you do and you’d feel more comfortable removing their access from your page; you might block an ex, just to save yourself accidentally seeing something you'd rather not; or, for perhaps inexplicable and irrational reasons, you’d rather just not have somebody popping in your cyber-sphere: block block block.
Blocking someone on Instagram is straightforward. Just go on their account, click the three-dot icon and click ‘Block User’.
That’s all well and good, but when you block someone, what exactly can they see?
Blocking somebody on Instagram isn’t quite like blocking someone on Facebook. If you block someone on Facebook all trace of you is removed from their view; they can’t even search your name. However, on Instagram it’s a little different.
Firstly, when you block a user you are cutting the contact between you so that you no longer follow each other, so even if you unblock them later on you’ll have to re-follow each other.
Secondly, if you block someone you can still see search for their profile, see their profile (unless they are private), and see their username on your feed, say if they have liked other posts. So unfortunately you can't brutally delete all traces of them like you can on Facebook.
So, what can they see when you block them? Well, they can still search your name, find your profile and see your bio. It will give them the option to ‘Follow’, but if they were to click it nothing would happen. To them, your profile would say ‘No Posts Yet’.
There’s a catch though, the only way you can really stop someone from your profile is if you block them and make your profile private. This is because a blocked user can still view your profile if they type in your username into a browser, as to view un-private Instagram profiles you don’t even need an Instagram account.
On the contrary, you can actually decide to receive notifications when your favourite users post on Instagram, by going on their profile and clicking on the three-dot icon, and pressing 'Turn On Post Notifications'.
How does Instagram arrange likes?
With all the algorithm changes made to Instagram its hard to keep up. Currently, Instagram arranges photos in your feed not based on chronology but on what posts and users you mostly interract with, thus making it more tailored to you. This has seemed to seep into the arrangement of 'likes' on posts too.
At the beginning of 2016 Instagram was experimenting with how 'likes' on a post were displayed, previewing names as well as a number (why). Although there is still no clear formula to explain whose names are the lucky ones to appear not as numbers, it seems to be those who interract with your profile the most, or, if it's a friend's post, you'll see names of users that you both follow.
Can you see who's viewed your Instagram profile?
Instagram is morphing into the app Snapchat in more ways than one: you can now see who has viewed your Instagram Story and see if someone has taken a screenshot of your photo in Instagram Direct. However, there is not yet a way to see who has viewed your profile (thank god).
Can you upload more than one photo in one post?
Instagram have recently introduced a new feature, Instagram Galleries. This allows you to upload up to 10 photos or videos at once in a gallery style format. Your followers are then be able to swipe through your multiple snaps within their feed, a bit like when you look at photo albums on Facebook mobile.
Instagram Hack 1: Scroll through an account without accidentally 'liking'
This hack is a handy one as it will elimate that 'double-tap paranoia'. We know the feeling of getting a little too carried away having a nose at someone's Instagram and then suddenly we're 108 weeks down and our palms are clammy and our heart is thudding. Well, if you pre-load somebody's profile and then scroll down whilst on 'Airplane Mode' there is no need to fret about accidentally liking a pic of someone's summer holiday four years ago. Just come off 'Airplane Mode' anytime you want to load some more pics.
Instagram Hack 2: Arrange your filters
Do you have an Instagram theme, or even just a preferable filter you always lean towards? Well you can rearrange your Instagram filters buy swiping all the way to the end of the filter wheel, pressing 'Manage' and then dragging the filters around to an order that suits you, and unclicking any you are unlikely to use.
Did you know that there are actually 17 new Instagram filters available to you, hidden in 'Manage' function, that you can click to add to your wheel, such as 'Dogpatch', 'Kelvin', and 'Charmes'. Instagram just became a whole lot more addictive.
How do I add face filters to my Stories?
Instagram has launched a new feature, which enables users to add filters to their snaps. Simply open the camera and tap the face icon in the bottom right hand corner. They will even work with Boomerang...
How do I rewind videos?
In one of the latest updates, you can play videos in reverse using the ‘rewind’ feature. You’ll find the new button beside the Boomerang feature.
How do I add hashtags to my Story?
You can now make your content even more shareable with the latest update. Simply tap the sticker icon on the top right of your screen, select and customise the hashtag you want to include. Then, add it to your Story. Friends who view your Story will then be able to tap the hashtag to explore other relevant posts.
How do I source inspo on the app?
Thanks to the latest update, users can now check out #OOTDs on a global scale, plan their summer travels and explore their local city's happenings with far more ease.
The social media heavyweight has launched a new feature on the Explore tab. Now, when you head to the section, you'll spot a Story ring at the top filled with Stories from your location.
You can also explore anywhere in the world by searching for the desired city and then clicking through the relevant Stories until your heart is content...
Soon, you will also be able to use hashtags on Stories, enabling you to further explore relevant content.
The social media app recently updated Instagram in order to enable users to add hashtags to their Stories.