Oh, Snap! Instagram Has More Users Than Twitter. The photo-based social network announced a verified user feature, taking a page from Twitter, which it has just surpassed in user numbers.
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No picture? Then it didn't happen.
With smartphones tethered to us at virtually all times, we have become a generation that speaks in snapshots. In line with that trend, photo-based social network Instagram announced today that it has 300 million monthly users, up from 200 million monthly users in March.
Instagram is still a far cry from overtaking its parent company, Facebook, which clocks 1.35 billion monthly users, but the app that allows users to layer filters on top of photos and then share them has blown past social-network behemoth Twitter, which last reported 284 million monthly users.
Instagram is also taking a page from Twitter's playbook, saying it will implement "verified user" badges. Twitter's verified user function makes it easier for users to know that they are in fact following a celebrity, journalist, public figure, musician, artist or brand. Instagram says it will begin rolling out badges in coming days.
The move is an effort to keep fake accounts off the platform. After all, disingenuous identities are the ultimate poison for a social media network that depends on developing trust between people.
"Keeping Instagram authentic is critical—it's a place where real people share real moments,"wrote Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom in a blog post announcing the news. "We're committed to doing everything possible to keep Instagram free from the fake and spammy accounts that plague much of the web."
When Instagram was scooped up by Facebook for $1 billion in 2012, it was regarded as a big buy by the entrepreneurial community. Since then, Facebook's acquisition of messaging service Whatsapp for more than $20 billion has made Instagram's single-billion-dollar deal look like a steal.