Exploring Photos & Videos

Feed

You can see when a photo or video was posted by looking at the bottom of the post, below the caption and comments.

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Just double tap a photo or video to like it or tap below the post. If you’ve accidentally liked a post, tap again to unlike it.

When you unlike a post, the story that you liked the photo or video will disappear from Activity. If the person who shared the post has push notifications turned on, they'll still get the notification that you liked the photo or video.

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You can save posts you'd like to see again. To save a post, tap below it.

To see posts you've saved, go to your profile and tap . Only you can see the posts you've saved. When you save someone's post, they're not able to tell that you've saved it.

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When you turn on post notifications for someone you follow, you'll get a notification every time they post a photo or video. To turn post notifications on or off:

  1. Go to their profile
  2. In the top right, tap on iOS or on Android
  3. Tap Turn on Post Notifications or Turn off Post Notifications

To turn post notifications on or off for multiple people, you'll have to visit each profile and turn them on or off individually. People aren't notified when you turn post notifications on or off for them.

Learn more about managing your notification settings.

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Reply to someone in a comment thread by mentioning them in your comment. They'll get a notification in their activity feed to view the comment. To reply to someone:

iOS

  1. Tap
  2. Swipe your finger to the left over the comment you'd like to reply to
  3. Tap and enter your reply

On iOS, you can also press and hold a username in any comment thread to automatically start a comment with that username already mentioned.

Android

  1. Tap
  2. Tap the comment or comments you'd like to reply to
  3. Tap and enter your reply
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Apple iOS

Yes, you can use your phone's built-in emoji (on iOS 5) or download an emoji app.

Keep in mind that Instagram doesn't offer emoji from the app. If you're having trouble seeing emoji, try these troubleshooting tips.

Android

Emoji aren't available on Android and won't be visible when other people use them, with the exception of the heart and airplane icons.

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If you’ve accidentally double tapped or tapped below a post, you can remove the like by tapping again.

Things to keep in mind:

  • Very soon after you remove a like, the like alert will disappear from other people's Activity.
  • If you've accidentally liked a photo and then unliked it, the person who posted it will still get a push notification if they have notifications turned on.
  • If you like, unlike and then re-like a photo, the person who posted will only receive one Activity alert for the latest like and one push notification for the initial like if they have push notifications turned on.
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To turn sound on or off while watching a video, tap anywhere on the video while it's playing.

You can also turn sound on by pressing the volume buttons on your phone while a video is playing. Once the sound is on, you can use the buttons to adjust the volume.

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You can zoom in on any photo or video you see in Feed, on someone's profile or on the grid in Search & Explore. To zoom in on a photo or video, pinch using two fingers.

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We want to show you ads from businesses that are interesting and relevant to you, and to do that, we use information about what you do on Instagram and Facebook (our parent company) and on third-party sites and apps you use. For example, you might see ads based on the people you follow and things you like on Instagram, your information and interests on Facebook (if you have a Facebook account) and the websites and apps you visit. Learn about what you can do if you see an ad you don’t like.

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Activity, Hashtags and Place Pages

Activity helps you stay up-to-date on recent activity from people you're following.

To see activity from people you follow, tap at the bottom of the screen, then tap Following at the top. To see your recent activity, like people who've followed you or liked your posts recently, tap You. Keep in mind that the Following tab won't work for accounts that follow more than 1000 people.

Your activity on Instagram will be displayed in Following for anyone who follows you. If your account is set to private, only the people you've approved to follow you will see your activity.

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Apple iOS

Tap the status bar at the top of your screen (where the time and battery level are displayed), or double tap automatically scroll to the top of your Activity.

Android

Tap the blue Instagram bar at the top of the app, or double tap to automatically scroll to the top of your Activity.

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You can add hashtags in the caption or comments of your post. If you add hashtags to a post that's set to public, the post will be visible on the corresponding hashtag page.

To tag a photo or video with a hashtag:

  1. Take or upload a photo or video
  2. Choose to add a filter, then type # followed by text or emoji in the Caption field (ex: #flower)
  3. If you want to add a hashtag to a post you've already uploaded, edit the caption or include your hashtag in a comment on your photo

After you tag your post with a hashtag, you'll be able to tap the hashtag to see a page that shows all photos and videos people have uploaded with that hashtag.

Things to keep in mind:

  • When people with private profiles tag posts, they won't appear publicly on hashtag pages.
  • Numbers are allowed in hashtags. However, spaces and special characters, like $ or %, won't work.
  • You can only tag your own posts. You can't tag other people's photos/videos.
  • You can use up to 30 tags on a post. If you include more than 30 tags on a single photo/video, your comment won't post.
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When a post has been tagged with a hashtag, you'll be able to tap the hashtag to see a page that shows all photos and videos people have shared publicly with that hashtag. Hashtag pages appear in the app and on the web.

If your account is set to private, only your approved followers will be able to see photos you've shared and tagged on hashtag pages.

Learn more about using hashtags.

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We may remove the Most Recent section of a hashtag page if people are using the hashtag to post abusive content in a highly visible place. If that's the case, you'll only see Top Posts on a hashtag page for a limited period of time.

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When someone adds a location to a post, you can tap the location name to see a place page that shows all photos and videos people have shared publicly with that location. Place pages appear in the app and on the web.

If your account is set to private, only your approved followers will be able to see your photos on place pages.

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At the top of some hashtag and place pages you may see a section called Top Posts above Most Recent. Top posts appear on trending hashtags and places to show you some of the popular posts tagged with that hashtag or place.

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Hashtags on Instagram may not be searchable if they're consistently associated with content that doesn't follow our Terms of Use or Community Guidelines.

We review these hashtags periodically and may make the hashtag searchable again if the content associated with particular hashtags changes over time. We encourage people to report inappropriate hashtags by using our built-in reporting.

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All photos and videos people have shared publicly and tagged will appear on corresponding hashtag pages. Posts appear in the order that they were shared. Hashtag pages appear in the app and on the web.

If your account is set to private, only your approved followers will be able to see photos you've shared and tagged on hashtag pages.

Learn more about using hashtags.

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At the top of some hashtag pages you may see a section called Top Posts. Top posts appear on trending hashtags to show you some of the popular posts tagged with that hashtag.

In the Most Recent section, photos and videos appear in the order that they were posted.

Keep in mind that if you add a hashtag to a photo after it was posted, the photo will still appear on the hashtag page according to the time it was originally posted, not the time the hashtag was added.

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Search & Explore

We’re always working to update the types of photos and videos you see in Search & Explore to better tailor it to you. Posts are selected automatically based on things like the people you follow or the posts you like. You may also see video channels, which can include posts from a mixture of hand-picked and automatically sourced accounts based on topics we think you'll enjoy.

Learn more about what you can do if you see posts you don't like in Search & Explore.

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If you see a post in Search & Explore, it doesn’t mean that everyone else is seeing it. We’re always working to update the types of posts you see in Search & Explore to better tailor it to you. For example, we may show you photos and videos that people you follow have liked or are liked by a large number of people.

If your account is set to private, only your approved followers will be able to see photos you've shared in Search & Explore.

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Instagram saves searches in Search & Explore to make it easier for you to find your favorite accounts and hashtags again quickly. To clear your search history:

  1. Tap to go to your profile
  2. Tap (iPhone) or (Android) in the top right
  3. Scroll to the bottom then tap Clear Search History

Keep in mind that clearing your search history is temporary, and that searches you clear may reappear in your history after you search for them again.

You can also hide individual accounts, hashtags or places to permanently remove them from your search history and keep them from reappearing:

  1. Tap and then tap the search bar at the top of the screen
  2. Below Top or Recent, tap and hold the search you'd like to hide from your history
  3. Tap Hide
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Some accounts, like alcohol brands, post content that’s meant for older audiences. These accounts may choose to restrict their content to people who are over a certain age. To determine whether you're able to see a restricted account, we may use information you provide on Instagram or on Facebook (our parent company).

You may need to update your Instagram app to the most recent version to see restricted accounts.

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If you see a post you don't like in Search & Explore, you can choose to see fewer posts like it:

  1. Tap the post
  2. Tap (iOS) or(Android) above the post
  3. Select See Fewer Posts Like This

If you see something that doesn't follow our Community Guidelines, you can select Report and follow the on-screen steps.

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If a blue dot appears next to a search result, it means it's an account that has shared posts you haven't seen yet.

Learn more about discovering posts in Search & Explore.

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