Instagram is rolling out a feature to restrict unwanted images and videos in DMs. The company began testing the feature in late June but is now ready to release it, TechCrunch reports.
In addition to existing privacy tools, including “Hidden Words”, which lets users block out offensive words, the company is adding two new restrictions to make DM privacy stricter. With the new feature, people can only send just one message to accounts that do not follow them. Previously, such accounts could send multiple messages in the DM requests. Accounts can only continue to send messages when their DM request is accepted.
DM requests are now limited to text only as part of the new privacy feature. People can only send images, videos, or voice notes when their DM request is accepted. The new feature will help reduce harassment on the Meta-owned platform and make it safer for women, the company says.
“We want people to feel confident and in control when they open their inbox,” said Cindy Southworth, head of Women’s Safety at Meta, in an emailed statement. “That’s why we’re testing new features that mean people can’t receive images, videos or multiple messages from someone they don’t follow, until they’ve accepted the request to chat. We’re grateful for the feedback we hear from our community — and we’ll keep listening to find ways to help everyone feel safer on Instagram.”
Instagram recently rolled out more parental control features giving parents increased supervision power over their teens. In addition, accounts have other privacy features, including the ability to “Restrict” or block unwanted users outrightly.