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Instagram adding offensive comment filter for posts and live videos

Instagram is introducing a new tool to automatically block offensive comments from photos and videos users post as well as live video broadcasts. Instagram is also using machine learning to automatically block what can be determined as spam in comments.

Instagram’s new Hide Offensive Comments toggle will start with English support and expand to more languages over time, while the automatic spam detection supports English, Spanish, Portuguese, Arabic, French, German, Russian, Japanese and Chinese.

The new Hide Offensive Comments automatic filter is coming to the Comments section of the in-app Settings from the Profile tab.

Instagram highlights that the new filter is optional and the old comment management features still exist:

Many of you have told us that toxic comments discourage you from enjoying Instagram and expressing yourself freely. To help, we’ve developed a filter that will block certain offensive comments on posts and in live video. All other comments will appear as they normally do and you can still report comments, delete comments or turn them off. Also, you can always turn this filter off.

Machine learning is also playing a part in the wider spam detection:

Powered by machine learning, today’s filters are our latest tools to keep Instagram a safe place. Our team has been training our systems for some time to recognize certain types of offensive and spammy comments so you never have to see them. The tools will improve over time, enabling the community’s experience of sharing to improve as well. We hope to make these filters available in more languages as our algorithms improve.

Last week Instagram shared that it’s testing a new way to optionally share photos and videos with select friends, and last month a new Archive feature was added for temporarily hiding specific posts.

Instagram is available for free on the App Store.

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Avatar for Zac Hall Zac Hall

Zac covers Apple news for 9to5Mac and hosts the 9to5Mac Happy Hour and 9to5Mac Watch Time podcasts.