Instagram Takes a Stab at Adulting

January 31, 2022

Yahoo Finance explains that, “Instagram Will Now Reduce The Visibility Of ‘Potentially Harmful’ Content” on its platform. Instagram’s reasoning is to clean to up its algorithm and keep users happy, but to also prevent harmful content from getting exposure.

Instagram, like many social media platforms, is attempting to rein in photos and videos deemed “harmful content.” The problem is the definition of “harmful content.” Content with deliberate violence and abuse, bullying, hate speech, pedophilia, and depicting blood such as traffic accidents are obvious. Other videos fall into a bigger gray area.

Borderline content is the biggest problem for Instagram’s algorithm and needs a human filter to interpret it:

“While Instagram’s rules already prohibit much of this type of content, the change could affect borderline posts, or content that hasn’t yet reached the app’s moderators. “To understand if something may break our rules, we’ll look at things like if a caption is similar to a caption that previously broke our rules,” the company explains in an update.”

One of the biggest changes with the policy is that an account’s report history will be taken into consideration with what appears on its feed:

“Additionally, Instagram says it will now factor in each individual user’s reporting history into how it orders their feeds. ‘If our systems predict you’re likely to report a post based on your history of reporting content, we will show the post lower in your Feed,’ Instagram says.”

In 2020, Instagram removed accounts that were deliberately posting misinformation and were debunked by fact checkers. The newest policy will target individual posts and not entire accounts.

Whitney Grace, January 31, 2022


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