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Did the protest work? Instagram scales back shopping features

Against the entire modern MO of the platform, Instagram is pulling back its shopping features. In this case, it’s the in-stream shopping elements that have taken off in China that are on the chopping block.

Thinking that western audiences would take to it as much as the eastern, Instagram embraced the new way of marketing and shopping for a more traditional approach, but the concept failed to take off in the same way, despite Meta’s best efforts.

As reported by The Information: “Instagram is planning to drastically scale back its shopping features, the company told Instagram staffers on Tuesday, as it shifts the focus of its e-commerce efforts to those that directly drive advertising. The retreat shows how Meta Platforms is moving away from some long-term projects as it focuses on building its short-form video business.”

So, what happened here? Did the Kylie Jenner-led protest for Instagram to be Instagram again work? Or are the eastern and western audiences simply too different to accept the concept?
The likelihood is that the answer is the latter. Instagram is the pioneer of shopping on social media. The chances are slim that they would be getting rid of this feature if it was gaining traction.

But maybe it also hints at what the western Instagram audiences want. For Instagram to be Instagram again?