Recently, Instagram released a new keyword moderation tool which enables users to filter out specific words - and even emoji - that they don't want to see in their Instagram comment streams.
It's an interesting option, and provides new options in the battle against online harassment and trolls, but tere are a few questions social media marketers should ask themselves before utilizing the tool.
1. Are there any emojis you would like to exclude?
Sometimes an emoji speaks louder than words. Be cautious when deciding to exclude emojis, as many have more than one meaning and are used in a variety of situations. However, I did see aninteresting article about Taylor Swift’s Instagram feed after her feud with Kanye West and Kim Kardashian. The word “snake” and the corresponding emoji filled her comment feed. Comment moderation allowed for her to censor both the word and the emoji. However, it is worth noting that that measure, in itself, did not stop the troll activity on Swift's profile.
2. Should you simply use the default setting?
Instagram's comment filter has a default setting with a “list of words often reported as offensive”, though Instagram hasn't clarified which words are included on their naughty list. You can use this option alone, in addition to your selected keywords and phrases, or you can turn off the default setting and exclusively use your personalized list.
Customizing your own list might be a better option since it's not clear what words are included in the default. You can always add more words and phrases as needed.
3. Will you enrage your audience further?
A dissatisfied customer might take to social to vent, and could get even angrier about their comments not appearing. Consider carefully what you wish to exclude from the dialogue. Where there's a will, there is a way. Expect to see users get around comment moderation by adding extra letters, misspelling words, or using numbers or symbols in place of letters.
There are many positives to consider when deciding how to utilize this tool. It'll enable users to block comments with slurs, expletives, and other offensive language. making Instagram an even more inclusive, safe place. Overall, it'll eliminate clutter for community managers, making it easier to respond to legitimate, customer inquiries.
With those advantages in mind, be sure to consider the three questions above when deciding how to utilize the comment moderation tool in a way that is best for your brand.
This article was originally featured on the Likeable Media blog.