Popular photo and video sharing app Instagram is mulling to extend the clickable links feature in image captions to everyone. This means users can add clickable links to captions of images or stories they share. The feature will, however, not be free. The company is likely to charge a nominal fee for letting interested users add clickable links. The revelation was made by the company in a just filed patent application. Under the new system, a pop-up will appear when users add a link. It will ask users whether they want to make it a clickable. For making the link clickable, the company will charge USD 2.
The patent was filed by Instagram’s parent company Facebook on September 8. The clickable link feature is currently not available to all users. Instagram only allows users with more than 10,000 followers to add clickable links. Verified handles are also allowed to share clickable links. The feature is not available to regular users. They can add a clickable link only to their bio. They are, however, allowed to write ‘link in bio’ to inform followers about links they wish to share on the platform. This limitation by the photo and video sharing social media platform had made it a subject of criticism.
Instagram said that when its algorithm detects a link, the online system will promptly ask users to pay a fee. Once the payment is successful, it will automatically make the link clickable. The patent said that the company might keep the fee flat for everyone. Multiple reports say that the company may only ask for a fee from businesses and may not charge accounts owned by individuals. The decision to introduce a fee is aimed at preventing users from adding content with links in captions for images and stories. This will also help Instagram to check the excessive sharing of links on its platform. The company has not provided any timeframe for launching this feature. Instagram has around 1 billion active users.