What Does “Active Today” Mean On Instagram? (Find Out!)

A man on his phone
Almost everyone is on Instagram!

One reason why everyone is hooked on this app: Instagram, is that it offers an interactive social media environment for its users, ranging from features like direct messaging aka DMs, reels, posts, the infamous story feature, and whatnot.

It’s quite normal to see that we are bombarded with countless messages in our inboxes, while some of us aren’t that often likely to have messages flooded in our direct messages. Whatever the scenario is, we’re familiar with it.

But, one question that crosses users’ minds sometimes is why is the phrase “Active Today” written under the username of some people while not of others.

Simply put, “Active Today” under someone’s Instagram username means that the person hasn’t been online on the app for the last 8-24 hours.

In this article, we will shed some light on the direct messaging culture on Instagram and how you can read indicators given by Instagram to predict someone’s online activity on the app. Let’s get started, then!

What Does “Active Today” Mean On Instagram?

a phone with social media apps
Not everyone is constantly active on Instagram.

“Active Today” can be seen in the direct messages section of Instagram where you chat with people within your reach. It appears under the username at the top of the screen.

When Instagram shows you “Active Today” under someone’s username, it means that they haven’t been online on the app for the last 8-24 hours.

To get a better understanding of this, let’s take a simple example: You ended a conversation with a friend, and they go offline. Later, let’s say when you return to your chat after six hours and view your chat, it’ll show “active 6 hours ago.”

However, once it reaches 8 hours, Instagram would no longer show the last activity in hours, instead, the activity status would disappear until the person comes back on the app. As it exceeds 8 hours, Instagram would show “Active Today” to notify that the friend hasn’t been on the app in the past 8 to 24 hours.

This indicator is beneficial in unexpected emergencies, predicting business unavailability, and informing wellness.

How Long Does Instagram Show “Active Today?”

Instagram stories
Instagram stories make the app more interesting!

Instagram shows the indicator “Active Today,” under a username for as long as 24 hours. After 24 hours of no Instagram activity, the “Active Today” indicator vanishes away.”

If a user has not returned to their account and performed no activity in the app for more than 8 hours, you will see “Active Today” under their username. 

The activity status “Active Today” shows under the username between 8 to 24 hours of no usage of Instagram.

What Are The Other Activity Statuses On Instagram?

Now that we have discussed the activity status that indicates a user hasn’t been online on Instagram for 8-24 hours, we’ll guide you through other different activity statuses Instagram shows:

Activity StatusMeaning behind it
Active now The user is currently online or was online a few minutes ago. They might be on some other apps while being online.
Active Today The user hasn’t opened Instagram for the last 8 to 24 hours.
Active X hours/X minutes agoThe user was online for between 1 to 7 hours on Instagram. Until it reaches 8 hours, this indicator remains in its form.
Active yesterdayThe app hasn’t been seen between 24 to 48 hours.
Instagram activity statuses

These activity statuses act as an indicator to keep track of the timeline of messages and availability, etc. However, you need to be mindful of a couple of things:

  • You can get access to be able to view someone’s activity status until the option is disabled.
  • Usually, you would view the active status of someone if you have had a recent conversation going on with them.
  • Both users need to be following each other to be able to see each other’s activity status.

What Is The Difference Between Active Today And Active Now?

Starting from the same initials, “Active now” and “Active Today” can be confused for each other, but that doesn’t make them nearly close.”

“Active Today” is an activity status that tells that it has been between 8 to 24 hours that the other person hasn’t been online on Instagram, whereas “Active Now” either means that the person is currently active or left the app a few minutes, usually five minutes ago.

Is Active Today On Instagram Accurate?

Yes, the “Active Today” activity status is pretty much accurate. Instagram’s AI keeps updating the activity status of a user online and is vigilant about it.

Why Is Instagram Showing “Active Now” But No Green Dot?

The “Active Now” activity status shows up along with a green dot for a user who you message.

Two instances when you won’t be able to view the green dot with the “Active Now” activity status can be either when there’s a technical glitch or the user turns off the feature to display their activity status under their username.

A pile of 3D Instagram logos
Sometimes the app may face technical issues.

Why Can’t You See An Activity Status On Instagram?

Let’s cover the basic reasons why you aren’t able to view someone’s activity status on Instagram:

You aren’t following them

If you aren’t following someone on Instagram then you can’t message them and ultimately see whether they are online.

Therefore, make sure you follow and are being followed by them to view their activity status.

They aren’t in your inbox

This takes us to another closely related point that being followed and following someone to view their activity status isn’t enough, you need to make sure they are in your inbox.

To do this, you need a start a conversation and bring them in the recently messaged section of your direct messages.

Activity status is turned off

If the user is in your recently messaged list but you’re still unable to find their activity status, then that’s simply because they turned off the option to view their activity status!

Instagram has a privacy policy that allows users to toggle who can view what and when. This includes the activity status. If a user turns disables who can view their activity status then you will be unable to see whether they’re active or not! And there’s nothing you can do about it unless it’s enabled again.

For a more in-depth explanation, have a look at this video:

Why Can’t You See An Activity Status On Instagram?

Conclusion

The main takeaway points from this article are:

  • When Instagram shows you “Active Today” under someone’s username, it means that they haven’t been online on the app for the last 8-24 hours.
  • Instagram shows the indicator “Active Today,” under a username for as long as 24 hours. After 24 hours of no Instagram activity, the “Active Today” indicator vanishes away.
  • “Active now” either means that the person is currently active or left the app a few minutes, usually five minutes ago.
  • The “Active Today” activity status is pretty much accurate. The Instagram algorithm keeps updating the activity status of a user online and is vigilant about it.
  • Two instances when you won’t be able to view the green dot with the “Active Now” activity status can be either when there’s a technical glitch or the user turns off the feature to display their activity status under their username.
  • If the user is in your recently messaged list but you’re still unable to find their activity status, then that’s simply because they turned off the option to view their activity status!

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