Changes are underway for the Threads app, granting users the ability to delete their account separately from their linked Instagram account. While an Instagram account is a prerequisite for Threads sign-up, users were previously unable to delete Threads without impacting their associated Instagram profile.
Adam Mosseri, CEO of Instagram, announced the modification in a post on Threads. Originally touted as a potential “Twitter-killer,” Threads faced challenges in maintaining its initial record-breaking growth. In October, Meta’s CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, revealed that three months after its July launch, the app garnered approximately 100 million monthly users, marking a decline of over half.
Initially positioned as a direct competitor to Elon Musk’s X (formerly Twitter), Threads launched without several features, including search and direct messages present on rival platforms. One significant limitation was the inability to fully delete a Threads account without also deleting the associated Instagram account, drawing considerable user criticism.
The new feature, accessible through the settings menu in the “Delete or Deactivate Profile” section, addresses this issue, according to Mosseri’s post on Threads.
The absence of such functionality had attracted regulatory scrutiny. When Meta initially announced the forthcoming change in September, the UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) emphasised the need for users to delete Threads profiles and account information without affecting their Instagram accounts.
In response to the update, the ICO stated that discussions with Meta had led to positive change, asserting that individuals should not have to compromise their usage of one service to be removed from another.
Additionally, Threads users will soon have the option to opt out of automatically sharing posts on Instagram and Facebook. While this feature enabled Meta to promote Threads to the vast user base of these platforms, it faced backlash from many users. Mosseri acknowledged the feedback, stating that Meta had heard the users’ desire for more control over the sharing experience.