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IG Users Are Pissed They Can’t Turn Off Meta AI — Here’s How To Work Around It

If you’ve been active on Instagram recently, you may now notice a new blue and purple circular icon next to your search bar. In mind-April, Facebook’s parent company, Meta, released its Meta AI assistant on Instagram, Facebook, and WhatsApp — and people have thought about it. 

But what is Meta AI, you may ask? Meta calls it the “most intelligent AI assistant that you can freely use.” While the “most intelligent” title might be up for debate, the toll is a highly capable large language model, challenging the likes of ChatGPT. It also has the capability of creating AI-generated images in a matter of seconds. With all its perks, many content creators are excited to take advantage of the perks Meta AI has to grow their platform. 

However, despite the feature being a benefit for small business owners and content creators, many people who aren’t that excited about it are demanding Meta to create ways to turn off Meta AI — because yeah, that doesn’t currently exist. 

Many people aren’t too keen on this unexpected feature — whether it’s due to the many fears surrounding the usage of AI, an annoyance over having a feature they never asked, or a hesitancy to agree to Meta’s Terms of Service regarding Meta AI, which includes usage of personal data.

The bad news is that you cannot simply remove Meta AI entirely. However, there is a hack for getting it to get out of your way on Instagram, per The Wrap. Although it takes a few steps, disabling Meta AI on Instagram is fairly easy. The first step you would take is clicking on the magnifying glass, located at the bottom of Instagram to begin searching. Next, you need to click on the blue arrow to send a message to Meta AI. Once the chat box sends you a message, you need to reply with, “I don’t need your help. I want to search the old way.” After typing the reply, you can tap on the name, Meta AI, located in the top left corner, tap “profile,” then block Meta AI. Keep in mind, in following this method, you will still see the Meta AI circle. Fortunately, you will be able to search the old fashioned way again.

If this method does not work, don’t worry. Many Reddit users have discussed alternative ways to avoid using the Meta AI feature. One method that a Reddit user stated worked for them was clicking in the circle symbol next to the search bar and the AI Meta profile. Then the user blocked, restricted, and  reported the profile as spam. Afterwards, they closed Instagram, then reopened and tried searching. 

All in all, despite there not being an official way to deactivate Meta AI on Instagram, these techniques may aid you in having a less invasive social media experience.

Eliana Jacobs is a National Contributing Writer for Her Campus. Born and raised in Southwest Florida, Eliana writes articles about lifestyle, Her 20s, and career-related goals/activities. Before becoming a national writer, Eliana wrote under the UCF Her Campus Chapter,where she wrote about health and wellness. Additionally, she has a passion for social justice, advocacy, and race-related news. Beyond Her Campus, Eliana also writes flash fiction and poetry for the nation’s largest student-run organization, Strike Magazine. Some of her most recent publications include Life In Plastic: It’s “Fantastic”. Eliana also was awarded multiple honorable mentions for her writing during her undergraduate career in her school’s Tutors’ Choice Flash Fiction Contest. Lastly, she recently graduated from the University of Central Florida, earning a dual degree in Sociology and Interdisciplinary Studies on a Pre-Medical Track. Ultimately, Eliana aspires to pursue an MD/MPH to specialize in Pediatric Endocrinology while intersecting her passion for public health through medical research, poetry, and journalism. In her free time, Eliana enjoys shopping, working out, and traveling. Lastly, Eliana loves exploring local cuisines and documenting restaurants she tried (Orlando and beyond) on her food Instagram.