Instagram Founders Want To Sprinkle AI Into Their Next Social Media App

Instagram's co-creators Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger left the social media game after butting heads with Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, but they are now back with some hot AI fuel in tow. Say hello to Artifact, a news reading app which describes itself as "a personalized news feed driven by artificial intelligence." So far, the app has been hidden behind a waitlist, but it is now widely available for Android and iOS devices. Artifact co-founders also have the ambition of generating their own content down the road, instead of just aggregating it from external sources.

Artifact serves users a personalized news feed, but first, it needs to learn your taste in news outlets and topics. In order to do that, users will need to select "25 articles over two weeks so it can personalize its offerings, displaying their progress on the bottom right-hand corner of the page," according to Bloomberg. The app shows stats about the progress made through the news curation algorithm, and once you've reached the threshold, you'll find publications and topics neatly served across different feeds. You can sift through a list of your favorite publications, and see stories prioritized from outlets that you pay a subscription for.

Turning news into a social experience

At first glance, Artifact sounds like a clean, algorithmically-propped news reading app. But there's a social aspect to the app's latest version, and that is something Instagram's founders hope catches on with the users. Once you register your phone number (which is optional) and grant the app access to your contacts, the app will assign a badge market to articles that are popular in your circle. "Hopefully it will grow into a social network. If that's the direction we choose to take it," Systrom tells Bloomberg.

Once you've finished reading at least 10 articles, Artifact will compile a list of your favourite content genres, topics, and publishers, and will focus on relevant stories moving ahead. Another neat feature is that you can see your reading stats in the form of graphs across categories and publishing outlets. Artifact is also adding a dislike button that, well, tells the underlying algorithm that you no longer want to see such content in your feed.