Instagram Close Friends update finally adds 'close friends' to stories, letting people avoid sharing everything with everyone

Little green ring system should allow people to share more personal information without worrying who will see it

Andrew Griffin
Friday 30 November 2018 10:06
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Who are the most followed users on Instagram

Instagram has finally added the option to properly control who sees your stories.

The new Close Friends feature will allow users to pick who their most trusted or best followers are and only show them the personal information they don't want pushed out into the world.

Until now, Instagram's stories have been all or nothing: they are either shared with anyone who sees your profile, even if they don't follow you, or are not shared at all. The company has offered the option to block specific people from viewing them, but that has to be done individually for each person.

The new feature allows Instagram users to hide away the story posts that they might not want seeing by the whole world, instead just showing them to a select group of close friends. That should allow people to share "more personal moments with a smaller group", Instagram said.

"Instagram Stories has become the place to express yourself and share everyday moments, but our community has grown — sometimes what you want to share isn't for everyone," the company wrote in its announcement blog post.

Instagram had always intended for stories to be a more personal way of sharing information on the site. Not only do they disappear 24 hours after they are posted, users can see everyone who has watched them.

Adding people to the list of close friends is simple: go to your profile and click on the "Close Friends" option in the side menu and add people. Then when you share a new story, you'll have the option of sharing only with the people in that list.

Only you can see your own close friends list, people will not know from the app if they are not in it, and there is no way for people to ask to be added.

If you are chosen as someone's close friend, you will see a green ring badge when you're viewing their stories, and a green ring around their profile photo in the list of stories.

Close friends will be rolling out globally today on both iOS and Android, the company said.

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