X Removes 'Likes' From All User Profiles To Protect Their Public Image

The Likes tab on user profiles on X will disappear, but users will still be able to see who liked their own posts and the total like count for all posts and replies.

However, users of the platform (previously Twitter) will not be able to see the people who liked someone else’s post or their Liked tab on their profile.

Private likes are rolling out to all users on X. An option for X’s Premium subscribers, the feature will now assure that any posts or replies a user likes on the platform will be hidden from public view.

According to X’s director of engineering, Haofei Wang, hiding likes is meant to protect users’ public reputation. In May, Wang tweeted that public likes were “incentivizing the wrong behavior.”

“Many people feel discouraged from liking content that might be ‘edgy’ in fear of retaliation from trolls, or to protect their public image,” he added. “Edgy” content likely meaning posts that are categorized as not suitable for work (NSFW), including content that features adult nudity or sexual behavior.



The rollout of private likes to all users comes directly after X became the first major social media network to allow adult content outright, which means that NSFW posts could become more prevalent on the platform. Seeing which users liked a post containing nudity or sexual behavior would limit potential engagement.

The decision to hide likes also comes after high-profile users like Texas Senator Ted Cruz liked a sexually explicit video, which appeared in his feed, and Chinese ambassador to the UK Liu Xiaoming liked posts criticizing the Chinese Communist Party.

X owner Elon Musk has gained a reputation for liking offensive and NSFW content on X, including pornographic, transphobic and far-right extremist posts. 

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