Welcome to the new era of Instagram as it shifts even further towards an all-reels, all-time machine to keep users’ short attention spans within the app instead of TikTok. In addition to encouraging users to create reels with simpler templates to let you interact with content and a new dual function that records simultaneously with the front and rear camera, it has another shortcut to a wealth of new reels of content: pretty much any video you post on Instagram.
Is your account public and have you posted a video of less than 90 seconds? In the Reels Suggestion Algorithm it goes, play for whoever thinks Instagram will find it interesting, and it will be fully available for them to remix and put their own spin on using the built-in content tools.
If you’re going to post a new video to Instagram, you’ll get this splash screen with the change.
I wonder if it can surprise users who have been on Instagram for a while without diving into Reels or treating their content very differently than on, say, a public TikTok account. This also applies to Photos in its own way because “[i]In the coming weeks you will be able to remix public photos.’ And on your profile, videos and roles are now combined under one button.
The Instagram Help Center describes how it works now:
For public accounts: Anyone on Instagram can have your rolls and remix feed videos shared after remixes became available.
If you have a public account, you can disable remixes for reels, feed videos, or both without changing your account’s privacy settings. You can also turn off remixes for individual videos
There are a few exceptions to this, such as videos posted before things changed today and videos longer than 15 minutes. The blog post also indicated that currently only videos under 90 seconds are eligible for the discovery and recommendation system.
The changes also come into play as Facebook splits its main feed – the algorithm changes to work more like TikTok, just like The edge reported last month – with the default option bringing in more featured content, including roles. It needs something to show people that it’s more than just reposted TikTok videos, and your quirky Instagram video posts are one way to get it.