I have no stake in this, just observing. The normies are up in arms right now because of the CEOs decision to remove likes in the US. Thousands of ‘influencers’ are inevitably going to be hit, and as one of the main features of IG, the move makes no financial sense for IG itself. Many users will decrease their usage (many of which will flood Reddit), but a large swath will also go back to using FB, where Likes will always be a focus. Rather than influencers making money on posts, FB will make more money on ads.
The ‘conspiracy’ element for me is just another example of the power of big tech, and how they even cannibalize their own properties to allow the larger entity as a whole to grow. By removing individual success stories on IG, more people will focus on the FB watch content, FB stars, FB promoted feeds, etc. just keep users plugged in by any means necessary, and absorb all the data possible.