By now just about everyone knows it, so we’re going to start saying it outright more often: Instagram’s Reels is a straight up copy-n-paste of the TikTok formula. Which is fine. Good artists borrow, great artists steal and all that.
With that in mind, Instagram’s making Reels even less original by adding yet another made-famous-by-TikTok feature: replying to comments with Reels.
Reel comments, reel people
Instagram’s calling the feature “Reels Visual Replies”, which somehow tells you exactly what is without explaining it at all in the same breath.
What “Visual Replies” means that you can select specific comments to your previous and reply to them with a video. The selected comment will appear alongside you in your reel as a sticker. Exactly the way it looks on TikTok.
Instagram announced the feature on Twitter saying (via TechCrunch):
“We love the communities that creators have built on Instagram. That’s why we’re excited to launch Reels Visual Replies, a new feature to interact with your audience. You can now reply to comments with Reels and the comment will pop up as a sticker.”
Again, we’re not going to throw any shade at Instagram for cribbing some of TikTok’s notes. TikTok found something that worked, and just about everyone wants to ride its coattails. But we’re not going to give the platform any props for hopping on a bandwagon either. Safe to say that you’re probably going to be lukewarm about this unless you’re a die-hard Instagram fan with posters of Adam Mosseri up above your bed. To which we say, please find new hobbies.